suf·​fi·​cient | \ sə-ˈfi-shənt How to pronounce sufficient (audio) \

Definition of sufficient

1a : enough to meet the needs of a situation or a proposed end sufficient provisions for a month
b : being a sufficient condition
2 archaic : qualified, competent

Other Words from sufficient

sufficiently adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for sufficient

sufficient, enough, adequate, competent mean being what is necessary or desirable. sufficient suggests a close meeting of a need. sufficient savings enough is less exact in suggestion than sufficient. do you have enough food? adequate may imply barely meeting a requirement. the service was adequate competent suggests measuring up to all requirements without question or being adequately adapted to an end. had no competent notion of what was going on

Examples of sufficient in a Sentence

Considering that John Adams was notoriously insecure about his own place in history, he surely would have enjoyed his current renown. He and Abigail get pride of place in the family crypt, down a winding staircase in the church basement. On her plaque in the crypt, she is described as a "model of domestic worth," as though she were a particularly charming chifforobe, and not a woman who survived a troubled marriage with sufficient courage that both houses of Congress adjourned upon hearing of her death. — Charles P. Pierce, Boston Globe Magazine, 26 July 2009 Because canines are, for the most part, unable to naturally manufacture sufficient vitamins to meet their daily requirements, a dog's routinely consumed meals, with some exceptions, must be augmented with them during the manufacturing process. — Tom Ewing, Dog Watch, February 2009 And since this policy is usually accompanied by a pledge to provide sufficient scholarship funds to admitted applicants who cannot afford the full cost (around $45,000 in the Ivy League today), it is an expensive policy. — Andrew Delbanco, New York Review of Books, 29 Mar. 2007 The result was a magnificent example of evidence overkill—the first set of prints alone was sufficient to match the gangbanger to a set in the national Automated Fingerprint Identification System database. — Jessica Snyder Sachs, Popular Science, March 2004 A brisk walk is sufficient to raise your heart rate. There must be sufficient funds in your bank account to cover the check. Her explanation was not sufficient to satisfy the police. See More
Recent Examples on the Web Your Kentucky driver's license is sufficient, and so are military, college and Kentucky government IDs. Morgan Watkins, The Courier-Journal, 12 May 2022 These new variants are so contagious that a cloth mask just isn't sufficient. Katia Hetter, CNN, 8 May 2022 Peak power for the fuel cell powertrain is 2 MW (2,682 hp), which is sufficient for the haul truck to retain its 300-metric-ton (661,000-lb) payload rating. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, 6 May 2022 The work of organizers and advocates like Braselton exist due to the very fact that Roe has never been sufficient. Annie Geng, The New Republic, 4 May 2022 Perimeter controls may have been sufficient at one point, but that approach is now increasingly dangerous. Michael Xie, Forbes, 4 May 2022 But with climate change, the old engineering tricks that helped keep permafrost frozen aren’t sufficient. Lois Parshley, Anchorage Daily News, 3 May 2022 The government has released correspondence with tournament officials from November stating its position that a COVID-19 infection within the past six months wasn't sufficient grounds to enter the country without being vaccinated. Dan Wolken, USA TODAY, 8 Jan. 2022 Lawyers for Andrew say that the agreement protects the prince from claims like those brought by Giuffre and will be sufficient grounds for the lawsuit's dismissal. NBC News, 2 Jan. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sufficient.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of sufficient

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

History and Etymology for sufficient

Middle English sufficiant, sufficient, borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French suffisant, sufficient, in part from present participle of suffire "to suffice," in part borrowed from Latin sufficient-, sufficiens, from present participle of sufficere "to have enough strength or capacity, be adequate" — more at suffice

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Time Traveler for sufficient

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

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Dictionary Entries Near sufficient



sufficient condition

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Last Updated

16 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Sufficient.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for sufficient


suf·​fi·​cient | \ sə-ˈfi-shənt How to pronounce sufficient (audio) \

Kids Definition of sufficient

: enough to achieve a goal or fill a need sufficient evidence

Other Words from sufficient

sufficiently adverb



Legal Definition of sufficient

: enough to meet the needs under the law of a situation or a proposed end

Other Words from sufficient

sufficiently adverb


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