vis·​i·​bil·​i·​ty | \ ˌvi-zə-ˈbi-lə-tē How to pronounce visibility (audio) \
plural visibilities

Definition of visibility

1 : the quality or state of being visible
2a : the degree of clearness (as of the atmosphere or ocean) specifically : the greatest distance through the atmosphere toward the horizon at which prominent objects can be identified with the naked eye
b : capability of being readily noticed
c : capability of affording an unobstructed view
3 : a measure of the ability of radiant energy to evoke visual sensation

Examples of visibility in a Sentence

The extra publicity helped to increase the company's visibility.

Recent Examples on the Web

The pharmacy chain has also reduced the visibility of tobacco products in some stores. Aisha Al-muslim, WSJ, "Walgreens Isn’t Ready to Quit Cigarette Sales Yet," 31 Mar. 2019 The evenings get dark earlier, creating a spooky vibe, but also reducing visibility on the road. Rachel Becker, The Verge, "Halloween is a scary night to be a pedestrian," 30 Oct. 2018 Stagnant air that reduced visibility and air quality around Puget Sound on Monday, is clearing up gradually and unlikely to return for the rest of the week, the National Weather Service said. Hannah Rodriguez, The Seattle Times, "Polluted air, fog are back in Puget Sound, but not for long," 23 Oct. 2018 Seawater is often turbid, clouded with organic matter and reducing visibility to mere feet. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The Military Could Track Objects Underwater With Seal Whiskers," 13 Aug. 2018 For automotive competitors, the move would reduce visibility into a company that has captured the collective attention of a once-skeptical industry. Rolfe Winkler, WSJ, "Tesla’s Big Question: Better or Worse Off as Private Company," 8 Aug. 2018 Blowing dust could reduce visibility in the desert, and downed power lines and tree limbs are also possible. Robert Krier,, "Cool day on tap, with strong winds in mountains and desert," 16 Apr. 2018 The weather service defines a blizzard as three or more hours of sustained wind or frequent gusts to 35 mph or greater; and falling or blowing snow that reduces visibility frequently to less than one-quarter of a mile. Alanna Durkin Richer,, "Nor'easter could dump up to 2 feet of snow on winter-weary Northeast," 13 Mar. 2018 Strong wind gusts were likely to damage trees and power lines, and blowing snow will significantly reduce visibility at times, the weather service said. John Bacon, USA TODAY, "Northeast braces for third nor'easter, blizzard conditions and a bomb cyclone — again," 12 Mar. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for visibility

Last Updated

3 Jun 2019

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

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English Language Learners Definition of visibility

: the ability to see or be seen
: the quality or state of being known to the public


vis·​i·​bil·​i·​ty | \ ˌvi-zə-ˈbi-lə-tē How to pronounce visibility (audio) \

Kids Definition of visibility

: the ability to see or be seen The bad weather caused poor visibility on the roads. Bright clothing increased the hunter's visibility.


vis·​i·​bil·​i·​ty | \ ˌviz-ə-ˈbil-ət-ē How to pronounce visibility (audio) \
plural visibilities

Medical Definition of visibility

1 : the quality or state of being visible
2 : a measure of the ability of radiant energy to evoke visual sensation

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Comments on visibility

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