pref·​er·​a·​ble | \ ˈpre-f(ə-)rə-bəl, ˈpre-fər-bəl also pri-ˈfər-ə-bəl\

Definition of preferable

: having greater value or desirability : being preferred

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Other Words from preferable

preferability \ ˌpre-​f(ə-​)rə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē \ noun
preferably \ ˈpre-​f(ə-​)rə-​blē \ adverb

Examples of preferable in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

This is preferable for Alzheimer’s/dementia residents who are at greater risk of falling or becoming disoriented. San Diego Elder Law Center,, "CHECKLIST: When it's time for memory care," 24 Apr. 2018 This is disappointing, as many users deem Nvidia GPUs to be preferable for games—although much of that is because of Nvidia's strong Windows drivers, which doesn't apply here. Samuel Axon, Ars Technica, "Are external GPUs for Macs viable in macOS 10.13.4? We tested to find out," 14 Apr. 2018 Arguing the tournament case for teams like Oklahoma or Syracuse is preferable for the game’s power brokers to arguing about the credibility and legitimacy of major college basketball’s way of life. Christopher L. Gasper,, "There’s a dark cloud hanging over this year’s NCAA Tournament," 12 Mar. 2018 This is surely preferable to ObamaCare’s shameless giveaway to the insurance and health-care industries. WSJ, "Government Health Care Is the Best System," 15 Nov. 2018 Although none of the flights are nonstop, one layover is definitely preferable to two. Bridget Hallinan, Condé Nast Traveler, "Flight Deal: U.S. to Mumbai from $660 Round-Trip," 10 Aug. 2018 Of course, 10,000 bottles of hot sauce would have been preferable, but dude can't win 'em all. Mehera Bonner, Marie Claire, "Jay Z Got in Formation and Gave Beyoncé an Epic Super Bowl Gift," 8 Feb. 2016 Light bulb continuity: Contrary to popular opinion, incandescent bulbs are still available and in some cases are preferable to LED or CFL models. Roy Berendsohn, Popular Mechanics, "The Smart Person's Guide To Avoiding Electrical Shock," 29 Apr. 2016 At worst, the administration is undermining its own argument that long-term detention is preferable. Dara Lind, Vox, "The Trump administration reportedly wants to try family separation again," 12 Oct. 2018

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

1666, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

14 Jan 2019

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The first known use of preferable was in 1666

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More Definitions for preferable



English Language Learners Definition of preferable

: better or more desirable


pref·​er·​a·​ble | \ ˈpre-fə-rə-bəl \

Kids Definition of preferable

: better or more desireable the preferable choice

Other Words from preferable

preferably \ -​blē \ adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on preferable

Spanish Central: Translation of preferable

Nglish: Translation of preferable for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of preferable for Arabic Speakers

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tremendous in size, volume, or degree

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