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

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Other Words from viable

viability \ ˌvī-​ə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce viability (audio) \ noun
viably \ ˈvī-​ə-​blē How to pronounce viably (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?
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Recent Examples on the Web

That’s par for the course for a lot of Chromebooks, but as Android (and Linux) apps become more viable on these machines, 32GB of storage doesn’t feel like nearly enough. Dieter Bohn, The Verge, "HP Chromebook x2 review: semi-pro," 27 Sep. 2018 California would be better off to encourage private recycling options, incentivize people to use EPS in more environmentally friendly ways, or wait until alternatives become more viable. Camille Harmer, Fortune, "How Banning Plastic Straws Could Make Pollution Even Worse," 12 July 2018 Given its undeniable beauty and strength, marble has long been a viable option for this important room. Kelly Dawson, House Beautiful, "Everything You Need to Know About Having a Marble Countertop," 5 Feb. 2019 That movie was, of course, released before swiping right became the only viable option to finding a new partner. Rachel Epstein, Marie Claire, "#ReadWithMC Reviews Christina Lauren's 'My Favorite Half-Night Stand'," 1 Feb. 2019 The return of cash as a viable alternative signals a major change in investor sentiment and poses a risk to the nearly 10-year bull market in stocks. Riva Gold, WSJ, "Cash Is a Star in Rocky Year for Global Markets," 4 Dec. 2018 If Verizon and other wireless providers can offer a viable alternative to cable, satellite, and their ilk, consumers could enjoy lower prices as well as more choices. Martyn Williams, PCWorld, "Verizon could provide the first 5G home Internet service in the United States, coming in October," 12 Sep. 2018 But several prominent American figures have touted it as a viable alternative to the Iranian leadership, including close allies of President Trump, like John R. Bolton, his national security adviser. Aurelien Breeden, New York Times, "Couple Is Charged in Plot to Bomb Iranian Opposition Rally in France," 2 July 2018 Parts of the peace accord dedicated to eradicating coca and providing poor Colombians who make a living growing coca with a viable alternative have struggled to get off the ground. Washington Post, "US report: Colombia coca production surges to record high," 26 June 2018

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.

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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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Learn More about viable

Dictionary Entries near viable

VI

via

viability

viable

via crucis

via dolorosa

viaduct

Statistics for viable

Last Updated

8 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for viable

The first known use of viable was circa 1832

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More Definitions for viable

viable

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of viable

: capable of being done or used
: capable of succeeding
technical : capable of living or of developing into a living thing

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

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More from Merriam-Webster on viable

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with viable

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for viable

Spanish Central: Translation of viable

Nglish: Translation of viable for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of viable for Arabic Speakers

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