com·​mu·​ni·​ca·​ble | \ kə-ˈmyü-ni-kə-bəl How to pronounce communicable (audio) \

Definition of communicable

1 : capable of being communicated : transmittable communicable diseases
2 : communicative prove myself a gentleman, by being … virtuous and communicable— Izaac Walton

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Other Words from communicable

communicability \ kə-​ˌmyü-​ni-​kə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce communicability (audio) \ noun
communicableness \ kə-​ˈmyü-​ni-​kə-​bəl-​nəs How to pronounce communicableness (audio) \ noun
communicably \ kə-​ˈmyü-​ni-​kə-​blē How to pronounce communicably (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for communicable


catching, contagious, pestilent, transmissible, transmittable



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Examples of communicable in a Sentence

communicable diseases that are usually transmitted sexually

Recent Examples on the Web

Since March 18, about six people in the department’s communicable-disease program have devoted part of their time to the situation. Ryan Blethen, The Seattle Times, "How do you persuade people to vaccinate? Clark County measles outbreak highlights the difficulties," 13 Apr. 2019 Health organizations and charities have lowered infant mortality and improved child survival around the globe by targeting communicable diseases such as tuberculosis and malaria. Lucette Lagnado, WSJ, "Young Cancer Patients in Poor Countries Get a Boost," 26 Sep. 2018 Some of the families have complicating factors, ranging from communicable disease to criminal histories to other risks of endangering their children. Lucas Laursen, Fortune, "ICE Admits It Lost Track of a Family It Separated That Might Be American," 11 July 2018 One case of Legionnaires’ disease has been reported in 2018 in DuPage County, according to a recent report of communicable diseases. Megan Jones, Aurora Beacon-News, "Cases of Legionnaires' disease down in Kane County; 9 cases recently reported in McHenry," 11 July 2018 Some of the remaining reunions of young children couldn’t take place because the children’s parents have criminal records, communicable diseases or have been deemed otherwise unfit, the government said. Sadie Gurman, WSJ, "As Government Misses Reunification Deadline, It’s Told to Pick Up the Pace," 10 July 2018 Outbreaks of communicable diseases, such as cholera, in the 19th century led to claims that the Graham diet helped to both prevent and treat infection. Kevin Klatt, SELF, "Why Weight Loss Diets Fail," 26 June 2018 The revelations came Friday as a WHO panel on non-communicable diseases issued a report that aimed to cut down on diseases like diabetes, cancer and obesity, which kill about 40 million people each year. Washington Post, "US blocks UN health panel from backing taxes on sugar drinks," 2 June 2018 There’s a medical unit with three paramedics, two medical staffers and space to quarantine those who have contracted chicken pox, scabies and other communicable diseases. Molly Hennessy-fiske,, "Texas Border Patrol center where immigrant families are separated draws lawmakers, protest," 18 June 2018

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

circa 1533, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for communicable

Last Updated

3 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for communicable

The first known use of communicable was circa 1533

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English Language Learners Definition of communicable

medical : able to be passed to another person


com·​mu·​ni·​ca·​ble | \ kə-ˈmyü-ni-kə-bəl How to pronounce communicable (audio) \

Kids Definition of communicable

: able to be passed to another person a communicable disease


com·​mu·​ni·​ca·​ble | \ kə-ˈmyü-ni-kə-bəl How to pronounce communicable (audio) \

Medical Definition of communicable

: capable of being transmitted from person to person, animal to animal, animal to human, or human to animal : transmissible

Other Words from communicable

communicability \ -​ˌmyü-​ni-​kə-​ˈbil-​ət-​ē How to pronounce communicability (audio) \ noun, plural communicabilities

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Comments on communicable

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