viable

adjective
vi·​a·​ble | \ ˈvī-ə-bəl How to pronounce viable (audio) \

Definition of viable

1a : capable of living a viable skin graft viable offspring
b of a fetus : having attained such form and development of organs as to be normally capable of surviving outside the uterus a 26-week old viable fetus
c : capable of growing or developing viable seeds viable eggs
2a : capable of working, functioning, or developing adequately viable alternatives
b : capable of existence and development as an independent unit The colony is now a viable state.
c(1) : having a reasonable chance of succeeding a viable candidate
(2) : financially sustainable a viable enterprise

Other Words from viable

viably \ ˈvī-​ə-​blē How to pronounce viable (audio) \ adverb

Examples of viable in a Sentence

The departure point for a viable peace deal—either with Syria or the Palestinians—must not be based purely on what the political traffic in Israel will bear, but on the requirements of all sides. — Aaron David Miller, Newsweek, 12 Jan. 2009 As gene therapy begins to enjoy some preliminary successes, scientists at the World Anti-Doping Agency, which oversees drug testing for the Olympics, have started to worry that dopers might now see abuse of gene therapy in sport as a viable option, though the practice was banned by WADA in 2003. — Patrick Barry, Science News, 2 Aug. 2008 Under today's forest management practices, few trees die natural deaths and fewer still attain the girth of the old-growth trees that supported the ivory-bill. The sad fact is that there is really no place in the United States today where a viable population of ivory-bills could persist even if captive reared birds were on hand to stock a release program. — John Terborgh, New York Review of Books, 26 Apr. 2007 To ponder [John] Updike's work in now old-fashioned sociopolitical terms, it might be said that he examines our struggle to maintain a viable center for our inner life while enduring the most revolutionary force in history—American capitalism. — Robert Stone, New York Times Book Review, 18 June 2006 At stake is the survival of our civilization and the habitability of the Earth. Or, as one eminent scientist put it, the pending question is whether the combination of an opposable thumb and a neocortex is a viable combination on this planet. — Al Gore, An Inconvenient Truth, 2006 When a patient agrees to forego a bed at the Portland VA—so far 75% of viable candidates have agreed to do so—a small "strike force" swings into action. The patient is sent home, typically with various medicines, oxygen tanks, and sometimes, a mobile X-ray machine. A nurse visits every day to perform tests, provide IV infusions and monitor medications. As a backup, a physician is on 24-hour standby for emergencies. — Gautam Naik, Wall Street Journal, 19 Apr. 2006 Another truth is that corks expire with age. A few wineries recognize that fact and recork their library wines every 25 years or so, but that's not a viable process for most collectors. — James Laube, Wine Spectator, 31 Mar. 2005 a viable solution to the problem He could not suggest a viable alternative. Is she a viable candidate? See More
Recent Examples on the Web Finding viable contestants from some states wasn’t easy, but the search turned up some gems. New York Times, 9 May 2022 That would be able to charge the existing 52kWh battery from empty to full in barely 5 minutes, which would start to make longer Formula E sessions than 45 minutes viable, even Le Mans-style 24-hour long-distance races. James Morris, Forbes, 7 May 2022 In the English Premier League three teams — Manchester City, Liverpool and Chelsea — remain mathematically viable. Kevin Baxter, Los Angeles Times, 26 Apr. 2022 So, Iran has resorted to a sort of aviation organ donor system: When one plane gets taken out of service, whatever parts remain viable are used for the next plane in need. Amy Kellogg, Fox News, 11 Apr. 2022 As of Tuesday, the Ukrainian air and missile defense systems remain viable and are being used. oregonlive, 1 Mar. 2022 Wheeler’s appointment as secretary of natural and historic resources will remain viable until the General Assembly session adjourns March 12. Washington Post, 8 Feb. 2022 Alabama’s model, like Massachusetts’, channels government funding into both public schools and private child-care centers — and does it in a way that allows the private centers to remain financially viable. Naomi Martin, BostonGlobe.com, 17 Jan. 2022 Beyond that, no one is certain that the building will remain viable. Jim Riccioli, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 16 Dec. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of viable

circa 1832, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for viable

French, from Middle French, from vie life, from Latin vita — more at vital

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Time Traveler for viable

Time Traveler

The first known use of viable was circa 1832

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Dictionary Entries Near viable

viability

viable

via crucis

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Statistics for viable

Last Updated

11 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Viable.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/viable. Accessed 19 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for viable

viable

adjective
vi·​a·​ble | \ ˈvī-ə-bəl How to pronounce viable (audio) \

Kids Definition of viable

1 : capable of living or growing viable seeds
2 : possible to use or apply a viable plan

viable

adjective
vi·​a·​ble | \ ˈvī-ə-bəl How to pronounce viable (audio) \

Medical Definition of viable

1 : capable of living the skin graft was viable viable cancer cells especially : having attained such form and development as to be normally capable of surviving outside the uterus a 26-week old viable fetus
2 : capable of growing or developing viable eggs

More from Merriam-Webster on viable

Nglish: Translation of viable for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of viable for Arabic Speakers

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