capacity

noun
ca·​pac·​i·​ty | \ kə-ˈpa-sə-tē How to pronounce capacity (audio) , -ˈpa-stē\
plural capacities

Definition of capacity

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : legal competency (see competence sense 1) or fitness capacity to stand trial
2a : the potential or suitability for holding, storing, or accommodating a large seating capacity
b : the maximum amount or number that can be contained or accommodated a jug with a one-gallon capacity the auditorium was filled to capacity — see Metric System Table, Weights and Measures Table
3a : an individual's mental or physical ability : aptitude, skill He has the capacity to handle this job. Her breathing capacity has deteriorated.
b : the faculty or potential for treating, experiencing, or appreciating capacity for love
4 : duty, position, role will be happy to serve in any capacity
5 : the facility or power to produce, perform, or deploy : capability a plan to double the factory's capacity also : maximum output industries running at three-quarter capacity
b : the quantity of electricity that a battery can deliver under specified conditions

capacity

adjective

Definition of capacity (Entry 2 of 2)

: equaling maximum capacity a capacity crowd

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Synonyms for capacity

Synonyms: Noun

complement, cubage, real estate, volume

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Examples of capacity in a Sentence

Noun

The nightclub has a 1,000-person capacity. a bottle with a capacity of two liters Does he have the capacity to handle this job? The disease causes a deterioration of breathing capacity. He was acting in his capacity as judge. serving in a supervisory capacity
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Some of the credit for getting Missouri back on the schedule probably goes to Jim Sterk, the former SDSU athletic director who now serves in the same capacity at Missouri. (hayne Palmour Iv / San Diego Union-tribune), San Diego Union-Tribune, "Aztecs will play football games for first time vs. SEC school," 7 June 2019 The additional capacity is putting the brewery on track to produce close to 6,000 barrels of beer this year, said co-founder David Dupee. Sarah Hauer, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Manufacturers, including Good City Brewing, lead the 50 fastest-growing companies in the Milwaukee area," 7 June 2019 Cantrell released a statement M onday noting that the Youth Study Center’s capacity is 48 beds. Kevin Litten, nola.com, "Protesters pan Cantrell’s juvenile policies outside City Hall," 6 June 2019 The trailer’s weight capacity is 66 pounds and the average price is $109.99. Nicole Forsyth, The Mercury News, "Dollars and Pets: Bike trailers for your pets," 6 June 2019 Walmart's online delivery and curbside pickup grocery business are expanding so fast that more capacity is needd in high volume markets, such as Dallas-Fort Worth. Maria Halkias, Dallas News, "Walmart's tech focus: 'Take friction out' of 160 million weekly transactions," 6 June 2019 Hon Hai, better known as Foxconn, is the only company with the capacity to marshal the armies of workers needed to ramp up iPhone production. The Economist, "Taiwan’s computing titans are caught up in the US-China tech war," 6 June 2019 For example, the California Independent System Operator still needs to verify that the plant’s capacity is being adequately replaced. J.d. Morris, SFChronicle.com, "Agency’s effort to retire Oakland power plant moves forward," 5 June 2019 Removing the student terrace would have an impact on the capacity of the stadium. Michael Casagrande | Mcasagrande@al.com, al.com, "Big changes made to Bryant-Denny Stadium renovation plan," 4 June 2019

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1897, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for capacity

Noun and Adjective

Middle English capacite, from Middle French capacité, from Latin capacitat-, capacitas, from capac-, capax

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Statistics for capacity

Last Updated

10 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for capacity

The first known use of capacity was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for capacity

capacity

noun

English Language Learners Definition of capacity

: the ability to hold or contain people or things
: the largest amount or number that can be held or contained
: the ability to do something : a mental, emotional, or physical ability

capacity

noun
ca·​pac·​i·​ty | \ kə-ˈpa-sə-tē How to pronounce capacity (audio) \
plural capacities

Kids Definition of capacity

1 : ability to contain or deal with something The room has a large seating capacity. Factories are working to capacity.
2 : mental or physical power You have the capacity to do better.
3 : volume sense 3 The tank has a ten-gallon capacity.
4 : role sense 1, status In your capacity as team captain, you can set a good example.

capacity

noun
ca·​pac·​i·​ty | \ kə-ˈpas-ət-ē, -ˈpas-tē How to pronounce capacity (audio) \
plural capacities

Medical Definition of capacity

1a : the ability to hold, receive, store, or accommodate
b : a measure of content : the measured ability to contain : volume a beaker with a capacity of one liter — see vital capacity
c(1) : capacitance
(2) : the quantity of electricity that a battery can deliver under specified conditions
2 : legal qualification, competency, power, or fitness
3a : power to grasp and analyze ideas and cope with problems
b : blended power, strength, and ability encourage physical activity to the limit of the child's capacity— Morris Fishbein

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capacity

noun
ca·​pac·​i·​ty
plural capacities

Legal Definition of capacity

1 : a qualification, power, or ability (as to give consent or make a testament) created by operation of law
2 : an individual's ability or aptitude especially : mental ability as it relates to responsibility for the commission of a crime (as murder) — see also diminished capacity — compare competency, incapacity, insanity

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Comments on capacity

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