de·bat·able | \di-ˈbā-tə-bəl, dē-\

Definition of debatable 

1 : claimed by more than one country debatable border territory

2a : open to dispute : questionable the debatable wisdom of his advice

b : open to debate

3 : capable of being debated

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Other Words from debatable

debatably \-blē \ adverb

Examples of debatable in a Sentence

it's always debatable which college football team is really number one, since there's more than one ranking system the debatable wisdom of going back for another helping from the buffet

Recent Examples on the Web

While life has taken me further away from my religious roots than others in my family, there are some topics that simply are not debatable as far as the elders are concerned. Dahleen Glanton,, "Death of Koko, the signing gorilla, reminds us what it means to be an exceptional human being," 26 June 2018 Whether that is a good sign for the broader Hong Kong market is highly debatable. Jacky Wong, WSJ, "Hong Kong’s Stock Market Is Running Short of Integrity," 30 May 2018 Yet for all the undeniable weaknesses in China’s economy, the central argument of the book is debatable. The Economist, "A compelling look at the flaws in the Chinese economy," 22 Mar. 2018 What's not debatable is that a close look at Dunkirk reveals many factors that came to shape modern warfare. David Hambling, Popular Mechanics, "4 Ways the Battle of Dunkirk Showed Us the Future of War," 23 Jan. 2018 The true gap between the Interstate-10 rivals is debatable. Jeff Mcdonald, San Antonio Express-News, "Harden, Rockets land another punch," 1 Feb. 2018 Whether the Constitution allows indictment of a sitting President is debatable. Salvador Rizzo, Washington Post, "Does Brett Kavanaugh think the president is immune from criminal charges?," 11 July 2018 Whether those uses could sustain Yerkes is debatable. Ted Gregory,, "U. of C.'s Yerkes Observatory has been a cherished icon for decades. Now it's for sale, and people are nervous," 5 July 2018 As for teaming up with some of our allies, that might be debatable. Fox News, "Gov. Rauner: I'm concerned about a tariff war," 27 June 2018

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

1536, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for debatable

Last Updated

23 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for debatable

The first known use of debatable was in 1536

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More Definitions for debatable



English Language Learners Definition of debatable

—used to say that something may or may not be true or real


de·bat·able | \di-ˈbā-tə-bəl \

Kids Definition of debatable

: possible to question or argue about The wisdom of his advice is debatable.

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