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 Supporters say the tokens allow musicians and artists to distribute and monetize their work more easily, while providing collectors ways to verify a work’s authenticity. Sebastian Pellejero, WSJ, "Maker of NBA Top Shot Scores $305 Million in New Funding," 30 Mar. 2021 Lam dismissed concerns that the changes will affect plans for the city to achieve universal suffrage and allow residents to vote for their leader. Ken Moritsugu, Anchorage Daily News, "China sharply reduces elected seats in Hong Kong legislature," 30 Mar. 2021 Several towns in England will create memorial gardens and woodlands to remember victims and allow residents a peaceful place to grieve for friends and family. Washington Post, "145,000 hearts are being painted on a wall opposite Britain’s Parliament — one for each life lost to covid-19," 30 Mar. 2021 The hinge tech that Apple proposes would also allow control over the speed at which the device is folded and unfolded, thus helping to prevent accidental damage. Chris Smith, BGR, "Was evidence just uncovered that shows Apple is building a foldable iPhone?," 30 Mar. 2021 Los Angeles opened applications Tuesday to its $235.5-million rent-relief program, an effort to keep city residents housed and allow landlords to pay their bills after a challenging year. Andrew Khouri, Los Angeles Times, "Need rent help? L.A. city residents can now apply for help from $235-million fund," 30 Mar. 2021 The business will then scan the code to verify the pass and allow the resident to come inside. Steve Bittenbender, Washington Examiner, "New York vaccine pass app aims to make events safer, but raises worries about 'digitized segregation'," 30 Mar. 2021 The bill would also limit state-of-emergency orders to a period of 90 days but allow lawmakers to extend them in 60-day increments indefinitely. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, "Nursing home isolation, Oahu weddings, eligibility rolls: News from around our 50 states," 29 Mar. 2021 Spurred by high taxes, out of state newcomers are settling down in South Florida as employers allow — or even encourage — remote work, according to various real estate agents in the tri-county area. Amber Randall, sun-sentinel.com, "As the pandemic rages, New Yorkers are buying up homes in South Florida. Here are the areas they’re settling in," 29 Mar. 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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Statistics for allow

Last Updated

2 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Allow.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/allow. Accessed 10 Apr. 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.
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

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More from Merriam-Webster on allow

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for allow

Nglish: Translation of allow for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of allow for Arabic Speakers

Comments on allow

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