tol·er·a·ble | \ ˈtä-lə-rə-bəl , ˈtäl-rə- ; ˈtä-lər-bəl \

Definition of tolerable 

1 : capable of being borne or endured tolerable pain

2 : moderately good or agreeable : passable a tolerable singing voice

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Other words from tolerable

tolerability \ˌtä-lə-rə-ˈbi-lə-tē, ˌtäl-rə- \ noun
tolerably \ˈtä-lə-rə-blē, ˈtäl-rə-; ˈtä-lər-blē \ adverb

Examples of tolerable in a Sentence

The heat was tolerable for only a short time. stubbing your toe is at least a more tolerable pain than breaking your foot

Recent Examples on the Web

Games, like any other type of art, can make life more interesting and more tolerable. Julie Muncy, WIRED, "Stop Expecting Games to Build Empathy," 27 June 2018 However, her aim in ousting Cushing and giving orders in her husband’s name is to make life more tolerable, not to overturn the state, and her tenuous power rests in ruling through her husband. Rena Gross, Billboard, "12 Big Revelations From 'Handmaid's Tale' Season 2, Episode 7," 30 May 2018 The pain in his still slightly discolored fingers is present but tolerable. Mike Malloy,, "JJ Schwarz could return to bolster Gators during CWS," 17 June 2018 Stickers, cards, and trivia apps on cellphones are all simple ways to keep children engaged and distracted while making wait times more tolerable for all involved. Dr. Elizabeth Pulgaron, miamiherald, "To go or not to go: How to make traveling with young children enjoyable | Miami Herald," 14 May 2018 The thesis grapples with a thorny problem of United States policy in the Middle East — how much repression by our allies is tolerable? Mattathias Schwartz, New York Times, "A Spymaster Steps Out of the Shadows," 27 June 2018 And some foods, while perfectly tolerable in proper portions, can lead to extra gas and bloating if overconsumed. Samantha Cassetty, NBC News, "Healthy eating mistakes that are interfering with your weight loss goals," 5 July 2018 Low humidity and cool to chilly nights make the climate more tolerable, however. Margaret Lauterbach, idahostatesman, "With drought always a threat, we all need to learn our water lessons," 16 June 2018 Stimulant medication is the first line of treatment for adult ADHD and has the greatest margins of efficacy with only mild tolerable side effects. Rene Hernandez-cardenache, Psy.d., M.s. Ed., miamiherald, "A focus on distraction: A closer look at adult ADHD," 2 July 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for tolerable

Last Updated

21 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for tolerable

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

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More Definitions for tolerable



English Language Learners Definition of tolerable

: unpleasant but able to be accepted or tolerated

: good enough to be accepted but not very good


tol·er·a·ble | \ ˈtä-lə-rə-bəl \

Kids Definition of tolerable

1 : capable of being put up with I still have pain, but it's tolerable.

2 : fairly good tolerable weather

Other words from tolerable

tolerably \-blē \ adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on tolerable

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for tolerable

Spanish Central: Translation of tolerable

Nglish: Translation of tolerable for Spanish Speakers

Comments on tolerable

What made you want to look up tolerable? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


characteristic trappings or dress

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