allow

verb
al·​low | \ ə-ˈlau̇ How to pronounce allow (audio) \
allowed; allowing; allows

Definition of allow

transitive verb

1a : permit doesn't allow people to smoke in his home
b : to fail to restrain or prevent allow the dog to roam
2a : to assign as a share or suitable amount (as of time or money) allow an hour for lunch
b : to reckon as a deduction or an addition allow a gallon for leakage
3 : admit, concede must allow that money causes problems in marriage
4a chiefly Southern US and Midland US : to be of the opinion : think
b dialect : say, state
c : to express an opinion usually used with as how or that
5 chiefly Southern US and Midland US : intend, plan

intransitive verb

1 : to make a possibility : admit used with of evidence that allows of only one conclusion
2 : to give consideration to circumstances or contingencies used with for a plan that allows for expansion
3 : to give an opportunity : permit She worked on the project here and there as time allowed. This should take 5 minutes for 1 strength-cardio circuit combo. If time allows, repeat once more for a 10-minute workout or twice more for a 15-minute workout.— Tracy Teare This plan is being implemented in phases as funding allows.Waterloo-Cedar Falls (Iowa) Courier

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Synonyms & Antonyms for allow

Synonyms

Antonyms

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Examples of allow in a Sentence

a religion that does not allow divorce They don't allow smoking in this hotel. I want to change my schedule, but my boss won't allow it. My boss wouldn't allow me to change my schedule. They don't allow people to smoke in this hotel. Women were not allowed in the club. The hospital doesn't allow visitors after 8 p.m. Her schedule doesn't allow her any time to run errands. The system allows you to transfer data easily from one computer to another. Occasional gaps allow passage through the mountains.
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Recent Examples on the Web In 2014,voters in the District approved a referendum to allow residents to grow and possess small amounts of marijuana for recreational use. Washington Post, 16 July 2021 Tedros' appeal for transparency was echoed by German Health Minister Jens Spahn, who urged Chinese officials to allow the investigation to proceed. Arkansas Online, 16 July 2021 The Trump administration modified the rule late last year to allow each showerhead to use the 2.5-gallon-per-minute maximum. Michael Collins, USA TODAY, 16 July 2021 The book was widely seen as an attempt to influence Pope Francis’ decision on whether to allow the ordination of married men as priests to relieve a clergy shortage in South America’s Amazon region. Francis X. Rocca, WSJ, 16 July 2021 Kemp also refused to allow the Senate Republicans to combine the case with a similar lawsuit filed by The Arizona Republic that seeks to obtain records directly from Cyber Ninjas. Ryan Randazzo, The Arizona Republic, 16 July 2021 The systemic changes in the legislation are clearly written to allow officials to restrict mail-in ballot rules and ban 24-hour and drive-through voting options, which tend to favor Democrats. James Moore, CNN, 15 July 2021 In education, this often includes understanding different students' needs and accommodating for those needs to allow a student to fully participate in school. Olivia Krauth, The Courier-Journal, 15 July 2021 His government has also worked closely with the social media giant to allow Indians to use Twitter to seek help from government ministries, particularly during health emergencies. Sheikh Saaliq And Krutika Pathi, The Christian Science Monitor, 15 July 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'allow.' 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 allow

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(t)

History and Etymology for allow

Middle English alowen, allowen "to commend, approve of, legally recognize, permit, take into account, compensate," borrowed from Anglo-French aluer, aloer "to place, allot, commend, accept as legally valid, permit, take into account, assess," probably in part from a- (going back to Latin ad- ad-) + loer "to praise," going back to Latin laudāre; in part going back to Medieval Latin allocāre "to place, admit, credit" — more at laud entry 2, allocate

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Time Traveler for allow

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near allow

all over the shop

allow

allowable

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Statistics for allow

Last Updated

19 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Allow.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/allow. Accessed 30 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for allow

allow

verb

English Language Learners Definition of allow

: to permit (something) : to regard or treat (something) as acceptable
: to permit (someone) to have or do something
: to permit (someone) to go or come in, out, etc.

allow

verb
al·​low | \ ə-ˈlau̇ How to pronounce allow (audio) \
allowed; allowing

Kids Definition of allow

1 : to give permission to Mom allowed us to stay up late.
2 : to fail to prevent Don't allow the dog to roam.
3 : to assign as a share or suitable amount (as of time or money) Our parents allowed us each five dollars to spend.
4 : to accept as true : concede I'm willing to allow that he may be right.
5 : to consider when making a decision or a calculation Our plans didn't allow for the possibility of rain.
6 : to make it possible to have or do something Your shoes should be big enough to allow for growth.

allow

transitive verb
al·​low | \ ə-ˈlau̇ How to pronounce allow (audio) \

Legal Definition of allow

: to give approval of or permission for: as
a : to grant fulfillment of allowed her petition for relief
b : to decide in favor of allow a deduction on a tax return
c : to permit to be presented allows his claim more jurisdictions will allow the cause of action

Other Words from allow

allowability \ ə-​ˌlau̇-​ə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē \ noun
allowable \ ə-​ˈlau̇-​ə-​bəl How to pronounce allow (audio) \ adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on allow

Nglish: Translation of allow for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of allow for Arabic Speakers

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