ac·​cept·​able | \ ik-ˈsep-tə-bəl How to pronounce acceptable (audio) , ak- also ek- \

Definition of acceptable

1 : capable or worthy of being accepted an acceptable noise level socially acceptable behavior a compromise that is acceptable to both sides
2a : welcome, pleasing Compliments are always acceptable.
b : barely satisfactory or adequate The performances varied from excellent to acceptable.

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Other Words from acceptable

acceptability \ ik-​ˌsep-​tə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce acceptable (audio) , (ˌ)ak-​ , ek-​ \ noun
acceptableness \ ik-​ˈsep-​tə-​bəl-​nəs How to pronounce acceptable (audio) , ak-​ \ noun
acceptably \ ik-​ˈsep-​tə-​blē How to pronounce acceptable (audio) , ak-​ also  ek-​ \ adverb

Examples of acceptable in a Sentence

acceptable and unacceptable noise levels It was an acceptable performance, although not an outstanding one. She plays an acceptable game of tennis.
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Recent Examples on the Web This duality makes her character -- and the movie -- all the more challenging, as we're asked to grapple with the rational and the irrational, the acceptable and the otherworldly. CNN, 17 Sep. 2021 What’s an acceptable protest and what isn’t is pretty much in the eye of the beholder. San Diego Union-Tribune, 17 Sep. 2021 What type of mask does the CDC consider acceptable? Karen Pallarito,, 16 Sep. 2021 Or take lockdowns, shown by research to increase deaths overall but nonetheless still considered an acceptable solution. Joseph A. Ladapo, WSJ, 16 Sep. 2021 Days on the market: The average time a Portland area residential property was on the market before receiving an acceptable offer in August was 23 days. oregonlive, 16 Sep. 2021 Rebalancing helps to maintain risk at an acceptable level to achieve this while also encouraging investor discipline that perpetuates adherence to the original asset allocations and risk tolerance levels to achieve long-term goals. Francois Botha, Forbes, 16 Sep. 2021 In February, Wikipedia unveiled a crowdsourced universal code of conduct outlining what behavior is acceptable by users and what’s not, in a bid to curtail harassment on the site, cases of which contributors have detailed for years. Washington Post, 14 Sep. 2021 Government agencies require low-use fixtures for commercial buildings, and manufacturers are eager to make those products more pleasing and acceptable to the residential market as well. Los Angeles Times, 13 Sep. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'acceptable.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of acceptable

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for acceptable

Middle English, borrowed from Anglo-French, borrowed from Late Latin acceptābilis, from Latin acceptāre "to accept" + -bilis "capable of (being acted upon)" — more at -able

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Time Traveler for acceptable

Time Traveler

The first known use of acceptable was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

21 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Acceptable.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for acceptable


ac·​cept·​able | \ ik-ˈsep-tə-bəl How to pronounce acceptable (audio) , ak- \

Kids Definition of acceptable

1 : worthy of being accepted an acceptable excuse
2 : adequate sense 2 He plays an acceptable game of tennis.

Other Words from acceptable

acceptably \ -​blē \ adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on acceptable

Nglish: Translation of acceptable for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of acceptable for Arabic Speakers


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