|-tro-||-tlo-, -dhro-, -dhlo-の異形。（-ability,-ableなど）|
First attested in the 1300s. From Middle English abilite (“suitability, aptitude, ability”), from Middle French habilité, from Old French ableté, from Latin habilitās (“aptness, ability”), from habilis (“apt, fit, skillful, able”). See also able.
- (obsolete) Suitableness. [Attested from around (1350 to 1470) until the late 17th century.]
- (uncountable) The quality or state of being able; capacity to do; capacity of doing something; having the necessary power. [First attested from around (1350 to 1470).]
2013 July 19, Peter Wilby, “Finland spreads word on schools”, in The Guardian Weekly, volume 189, number 6, page 30:
- The legal wherewithal to act. [First attested in the mid 17th century.]
- (now limited to Scotland dialects) Physical power. [First attested from around (1350 to 1470).]
- (archaic) Financial ability. [First attested in the early 16th century.]
- (uncountable) A unique power of the mind; a faculty. [First attested in the late 16 th century.]
- (countable) A skill or competence in doing; mental power; talent; aptitude. [First attested in the early 17 th century.]
- (Can we date this quote?) King James Bible, Acts 11:29
2011 November 10, Jeremy Wilson, “England Under 21 5 Iceland Under 21 0: match report”, in Telegraph:
- The most persistent tormentor was Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who scored a hat-trick in last month’s corresponding fixture in Iceland. His ability to run at defences is instantly striking, but it is his clever use of possession that has persuaded some shrewd judges that he is an even better prospect than Theo Walcott.
- (skill または competence): Usually used in the plural.
- Ability, capacity : these words come into comparison when applied to the higher intellectual powers.
- Ability has reference to the active exercise of our faculties. It implies not only native vigor of mind, but that ease and promptitude of execution which arise from mental training. Thus, we speak of the ability with which a book is written, an argument maintained, a negotiation carried on, etc. It always supposes something to be done,[usage 1] and the power of doing it.
- Capacity has reference to the receptive powers. In its higher exercises it supposes great quickness of apprehension and breadth of intellect, with an uncommon aptitude for acquiring and retaining knowledge. Hence it carries with it the idea of resources and undeveloped power. Thus we speak of the extraordinary capacity of such men as Lord Bacon, Blaise Pascal, and Edmund Burke. "Capacity," says H. Taylor, "is requisite to devise, and ability to execute, a great enterprise."
- The word abilities, in the plural, embraces both these qualities, and denotes high mental endowments.
From Middle English -ablete, -iblete, -abilite, -ibilite, from Middle French -ableté, -ibleté, -abilité, -ibilité, from Latin -abilitas, -ibilitas, from -abilis (“able”) or -ibilis (“able”) + -tas. Equivalent to -able + -ity.
- Most words ending in "ability" formed in English are first attested after corresponding words ending in -able.
- Note that this is not simply -able + -ity: in English it is a parallel formation, not a compound suffix: there is a sound and spelling change. Compare -ably (compound suffix) and -ification (parallel suffix).
- Some words ending in -ability are alterations of words of French origin ending in -abilité or Latin words ending in -abilitās.
- absorbability, from absorbable
- acceptability, from acceptable
- accountability, from accountable
- adaptability, from adaptable
- affability, from affable
- availability, from available
- capability, from capable
- culpability, from culpable
- desirability, from desirable
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