enable

verb
en·​able | \ i-ˈnā-bəl How to pronounce enable (audio) \
enabled; enabling\ i-​ˈnā-​b(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce enabling (audio) \

Definition of enable

transitive verb

1a : to provide with the means or opportunity training that enables people to earn a living
b : to make possible, practical, or easy a deal that would enable passage of a new law
c : to cause to operate software that enables the keyboard
2 : to give legal power, capacity, or sanction to a law enabling admission of a state

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Synonyms & Antonyms for enable

Synonyms

allow, empower, let, permit

Antonyms

prevent

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Enabling: The Behavior of an Enabler

Enable has a number of senses, most of which are some variant on allowing someone (or something, such as enabling cookies on a computer) to do something. In the past several decades, enable has also started to take on a new associated sense in the field of addiction studies, where enabling is viewed as giving misguided support to a person with some substance-abuse issue. A person who facilitates the self-destructive behavior of another is referred to as an enabler.

Examples of enable in a Sentence

The machine enables us to create copies without losing quality. The system enables students to access class materials online. These choices are part of what enabled the company to be successful. a filing system that enables easy access to information Be sure to enable your computer's firewall.
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Recent Examples on the Web

That red nose enables the person, somehow, to walk a metaphoric bridge of memories that had been lost to them. The Washington Post, The Mercury News, "Is laughter really the best medicine? In many ways, that’s no joke.," 15 June 2019 While Elodie is certainly responsible for her role as a shoplifter, her father’s lack of attention enables her behavior. Ariana Brockington, refinery29.com, "Elodie's Dad's Reaction To Her Shoplifting On Trinkets Is A Problem," 15 June 2019 For parents, a strong relationship with their surrogates enables them to feel a part of the pregnancy and to be open and honest about their feelings and desires as the pregnancy progresses. Ben Tinker, CNN, "The top 10 questions about surrogacy for same-sex couples, answered," 14 June 2019 This enables the attacker to read otherwise inaccessible information such as secret key bits. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "Researchers use Rowhammer bit flips to steal 2048-bit crypto key," 11 June 2019 Allowing employees to resign enables them to retain dignity and more easily get future jobs. Anchorage Daily News, "On owning your mistakes and letting a fired employee resign instead," 11 June 2019 This enables us to spend adequate time in the stages of sleep known as nonrapid eye movement sleep (NREM) and rapid eye movement sleep (REM). Steven Bender, Quartz, "Hitting the snooze button is bad for your health," 7 June 2019 The Sealy expansion enables Gulf States Toyota to better serve 158 Toyota dealerships in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Texas. Katherine Feser, Houston Chronicle, "Real estate transactions: Avera launches next industrial project in Baytown," 7 June 2019 That enables American factories to produce goods at a price and quality that can compete with goods made in China and Europe. Michael D. Shear, New York Times, "Trump Calls Off Plan to Impose Tariffs on Mexico," 7 June 2019

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Dictionary Entries near enable

en

en-

-en

enable

enabler

enact

enaction

Statistics for enable

Last Updated

20 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for enable

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

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More Definitions for enable

enable

verb

English Language Learners Definition of enable

: to make (someone or something) able to do or to be something
: to make (something) possible, practical, or easy
technical : to cause (a feature or capability of a computer) to be active or available for use

enable

verb
en·​able | \ i-ˈnā-bəl How to pronounce enable (audio) \
enabled; enabling

Kids Definition of enable

: to give strength, power, or ability to : make able A good night's sleep enabled me to face the day refreshed.

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More from Merriam-Webster on enable

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with enable

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for enable

Spanish Central: Translation of enable

Nglish: Translation of enable for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of enable for Arabic Speakers

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