feasible

adjective
fea·​si·​ble | \ ˈfē-zə-bəl How to pronounce feasible (audio) \

Definition of feasible

1 : capable of being done or carried out a feasible plan
2 : capable of being used or dealt with successfully : suitable
3 : reasonable, likely gave an explanation that seemed feasible enough

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Other Words from feasible

feasibility \ ˌfē-​zə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce feasibility (audio) \ noun
feasibly \ ˈfē-​zə-​blē How to pronounce feasibly (audio) \ adverb
feasibleness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for feasible

possible, practicable, feasible mean capable of being realized. possible implies that a thing may certainly exist or occur given the proper conditions. a possible route up the west face of the mountain practicable implies that something may be effected by available means or under current conditions. a solution that is not practicable in the time available feasible applies to what is likely to work or be useful in attaining the end desired. commercially feasible for mass production

Feasible and Doable

Feasible comes from faire, the French verb meaning “to do.” Doable and feasible therefore originally meant literally the same thing: “capable of being done.” Indeed, doable was formed with -able, the Latin-derived French ending meaning “capable of” combined, in this instance, with do, a word with roots in Old English and one of the most basic and useful of our verbs. Though their respective etymological meanings may overlap, doable and feasible exist more in parallel with each other than as true synonyms. As with most such pairs of words, the Latin-derived term is used when describing more abstract notions. The words most commonly modified by feasible include:

option

alternative

solution

plan

approach

These are words that describe what has yet to be decided or what will be carefully considered. By contrast, doable modifies more concrete terms:

task

thing

target

Feasible is used when an element of abstraction, distance, and technical specificity is needed. The more earthy doable is rarely used in formal writing, and is not found in the works of Shakespeare, the King James Bible, or any of the founding documents of the United States.

This abstract use of feasible also accounts for the word that expresses a putative, conceptual, or hypothetical state: feasibility. Indeed, we frequently encounter “feasibility study” but not “doability study” (although doability is a word that is sometimes used, it hasn’t yet been added to most dictionaries). As long as something is just an idea, it’s feasible. When it’s time for action, we need to find out if it’s doable.

Examples of feasible in a Sentence

Egyptian hieroglyphics … are also usually assumed to be the product of independent invention, but the alternative interpretation of idea diffusion is more feasible than in the case of Chinese writing. — Jared M. Diamond, Guns, Germs, and Steel, 1997 … there do not appear to be any remedies for this situation that are at once politically feasible and likely to work. — Richard A. Posner, Times Literary Supplement, 1 Sept. 1995 The '70s was the era in which it seemed more important, or more feasible, to reform our bodies than to change the world. — Barbara Ehrenreich, Utne Reader, May/June 1992 The government has now made it feasible for tourists to spend as long as a month in the country … — Fred C. Shapiro, New Yorker, 22 Oct. 1990 looking for a feasible way to create new jobs would it be feasible to build a cabin in so short a time?
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Recent Examples on the Web Meeting the goals of the LA partnership is feasible but requires strong policies at the state and federal levels, Tal said. Anne C. Mulkern, Scientific American, "Los Angeles Accelerates Efforts to Electrify Its Infamous Traffic," 30 July 2020 One thing that bothers Jordan is that the pod option isn’t accessible to lower-income parents for whom an additional $150 or more per week for childcare and education just isn’t feasible. Anna Claire Vollers | Avollers@al.com, al, "Wary of large schools, some Alabama parents create home school bubbles," 30 July 2020 Barry Reilly, superintendent of schools for District 87 in Bloomington, said considering the guidelines for students in school, allowing close contact sports is not feasible. Kevin Bessler, Washington Examiner, "Pritzker announces new restrictions for fall sports statewide," 30 July 2020 If getting the whole team on the same schedule isn't feasible, remote workers should still try to make regular appearances at the office. Kathryn Vasel, CNN, "Permanent WFH sounds great. But it's harder than it sounds," 29 July 2020 Fair organizers said the event, which draws more than a million visitors to Dallas each fall, was not feasible during the pandemic. Fox News, "Texas passes 10,000 confirmed new coronavirus cases in single day," 8 July 2020 Imagine being trapped between four walls, no feasible way to leave, the world closing in…. Leah Greenblatt, EW.com, "Kevin Bacon can't save drab thriller You Should Have Left from itself: Review," 18 June 2020 Keeping athletes confined to campus upon their return is not feasible, Duran said, so the city’s public health status remains a key factor in student-athlete safety. Greg Luca, ExpressNews.com, "Incarnate Word delaying athletics return in response to COVID-19 surge in San Antonio," 13 July 2020 While the state and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released guidelines on reopening, many have said the guidelines are not feasible. Lily Altavena, The Arizona Republic, "Dozens of Arizona school board members to Ducey: Delay in-person school opening until October," 10 July 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for feasible

Middle English faisible, feseable, borrowed from Anglo-French fesable, faisable, from fais-, stem of faire "to make, do" (going back to Latin facere) + -able -able — more at fact

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Time Traveler for feasible

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for feasible

Last Updated

3 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Feasible.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/feasible. Accessed 14 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for feasible

feasible

adjective
How to pronounce feasible (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of feasible

: possible to do

feasible

adjective
fea·​si·​ble | \ ˈfē-zə-bəl How to pronounce feasible (audio) \

Kids Definition of feasible

: possible to do or accomplish a feasible goal

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Comments on feasible

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