Definition of disabled 

1a : impaired or limited by a physical, mental, cognitive, or developmental condition : affected by disability Decades of government policy and a Supreme Court decision … have established that public services for all disabled people must be provided in the least restrictive and most integrated environment possible.— Sallie Tisdale For disabled travelers—or anyone nursing an injury—successful trips require planning. … Rugged or remote areas may require some give and take on your part, including physical assistance or workarounds.— Linda Burbank … 4,000 disabled athletes from 125 nations competing in 18 sports.— John Shaw

b : incapacitated by illness or injury … 17.4% of all match-ending injuries, were attributable to OT (orthopedic trauma). Two such stoppages involved multiple roundhouse kicks directed at the lateral aspect of the knee. The disabled competitors were unable to continue because of marked pain with weight bearing.— George J. Buse and Robert M. Wood

2 of a device or mechanism : rendered inoperative (as by being damaged or deliberately altered) a disabled alarm They would have pulled out but they were waiting on the Iraqi police to finish their report and there was the issue of the disabled fuel truck …— David Abrams

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Examples of disabled in a Sentence

The organization is working to protect the rights of disabled veterans. the disabled man was unable to climb the stairs without help

Recent Examples on the Web

The Mariners will need those spots because all players on the 60-day disabled list must be transferred back to the roster by 2 p.m. PT on Friday. Ryan Divish, The Seattle Times, "Nelson Cruz headlines group of seven Mariners that are now free agents," 29 Oct. 2018 With questions about his health swirling after multiple stints on the disabled list in recent months and an inconsistent October, Sale lacked sharpness in the first World Series start of his career. Jared Diamond, WSJ, "Red Sox Roll Over Dodgers in Game 1 of the World Series," 24 Oct. 2018 Sarah Palin slammed Sacha Baron Cohen and Showtime Tuesday on Facebook for their new prank series, claiming the comedian duped her and her daughter with a humiliating interview by posing as a disabled veteran. Yvonne Wingett Sanchez, azcentral, "Joe Arpaio says he was punked by comedian Sacha Baron Cohen in 'fake' interview," 12 July 2018 Palin claimed in a recent blog post that Cohen pretended to be a disabled veteran in an interview. Morgan Greene, chicagotribune.com, "Former Illinois congressman Joe Walsh, joins Sarah Palin: I was 'duped' by Sacha Baron Cohen — sort of," 12 July 2018 Reliever Drew Rucinski was placed on the 10-day disabled list with a groin injury while right-handed pitcher Caleb Smith underwent season-ending shoulder surgery and was transferred to the 60-day DL. Clark Spencer, miamiherald, "This ex-Marlin went from the basement to the penthouse in six months time," 9 July 2018 Gaynor, who did Race Across America in 2012 with a team of disabled military veterans, said the toughest part of the race comes near the end in West Virginia. Pam Kragen, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Blind cycling team to ride across country," 16 June 2018 The homeowners are going to make permanent an after-school tide pool program and expand access by disabled veterans and others, up to about 400 individuals a year. Steve Lopez, latimes.com, "California's newest public beach is glorious, but you have to paddle to get there — and the trip is treacherous," 16 June 2018 But the mission of providing an organization for disabled veterans is in the works. Charlie Hatch, Cincinnati.com, "Cincinnati Veterans Hockey Club starting with hopes to help vets, end stigmas and play," 12 June 2018

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

1633, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Statistics for disabled

Last Updated

23 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for disabled

The first known use of disabled was in 1633

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More Definitions for disabled


dis·​abled | \dis-ˈā-bəld\

Kids Definition of disabled

: not having the ability to do certain mental or physical tasks (as because of illness, injury, or a condition present at birth) that a person is typically capable of doing



Medical Definition of disabled 

: incapacitated by illness, injury, or wounds also : physically or mentally impaired in a way that substantially limits activity especially in relation to employment or education



Legal Definition of disabled 

: having a disability

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Comments on disabled

What made you want to look up disabled? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


living or existing for a long time

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