pli·​able | \ˈplī-ə-bəl \

Definition of pliable 

1a : supple enough to bend freely or repeatedly without breaking

b : yielding readily to others : complaisant

2 : adjustable to varying conditions

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Other Words from pliable

pliability \ ˌplī-​ə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē \ noun
pliableness \ ˈplī-​ə-​bəl-​nəs \ noun
pliably \ ˈplī-​ə-​blē \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for pliable

plastic, pliable, pliant, ductile, malleable, adaptable mean susceptible of being modified in form or nature. plastic applies to substances soft enough to be molded yet capable of hardening into the desired fixed form. plastic materials allow the sculptor greater freedom pliable suggests something easily bent, folded, twisted, or manipulated. pliable rubber tubing pliant may stress flexibility and sometimes connote springiness. an athletic shoe with a pliant sole ductile applies to what can be drawn out or extended with ease. ductile metals such as copper malleable applies to what may be pressed or beaten into shape. the malleable properties of gold adaptable implies the capability of being easily modified to suit other conditions, needs, or uses. computer hardware that is adaptable

Examples of pliable in a Sentence

Because the leather is pliable, it's easy to work with. She sometimes takes advantage of her pliable parents.

Recent Examples on the Web

If necessary, add flour or water in very small amounts to make the dough soft and pliable but not sticky. Daniel Neman, sacbee, "Artistry, flavor blends are marks of Moroccan," 10 July 2018 Institutions to catch and prosecute graft remain pliable and neglected. The Economist, "How Andrés Manuel López Obrador will remake Mexico," 23 June 2018 The hot oil of a fryer drives water away, leaving those carbs in crispy gridlock, but any trace of humidity could cause that crispiness to transform into soggy rubber as hydrated carbs become pliable once again. Ali Bouzari,, "Housemade: The magic of Liholiho Yacht Club," 22 June 2018 This technique is prime for a super floppy slice, but not the best on your typical Italian-American slice, because the crust is less pliable. Alex Delany, Bon Appetit, "A Long Answer to a Simple Question: How Do You Eat a Slice of Pizza?," 7 Mar. 2018 At every step, the wood—and then the paper—is hit with a precise amount of water, which helps break down the fibers and keep the products pliable. Michael J. Mooney, Popular Mechanics, "Inside the Koch Brothers' Industrial Empire," 9 Oct. 2015 The clear silicone limbs take on a ghostly look, with a pliable life-like texture. Laura Yan, Popular Mechanics, "Watch Hyper-Realistic Skin Get Made for Bionic Limbs," 17 June 2018 Microwave tortilla for 10 seconds, or until warm and pliable. Lisa Lillien,, "Hungry Girl: Satisfy Your Pizza Craving with This Cheesy High-Fiber Wrap," 4 June 2018 Ethereum was more pliable than Bitcoin, but its updates were disseminated by a core development team overseen by Buterin. Gideon Lewis-kraus, WIRED, "The Blockchain: A Love Story—And a Horror Story," 18 June 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for pliable

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from plier to bend, fold — more at ply

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Statistics for pliable

Last Updated

29 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for pliable

The first known use of pliable was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for pliable



English Language Learners Definition of pliable

: able to bend, fold, or twist easily

: too easily influenced or controlled by other people


pli·​able | \ˈplī-ə-bəl \

Kids Definition of pliable

1 : possible to bend without breaking

2 : easily influenced a pliable teenager

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Comments on pliable

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