Definition of tenable in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈtɛnəb(ə)l/


1Able to be maintained or defended against attack or objection: such a simplistic approach is no longer tenable
More example sentences
  • In my view, these grounds of objection are not legally tenable.
  • The question is genuinely debatable, with tenable argument supporting each side.
  • It is tenable to object to embryo research on ethical grounds.
2(Of an office, position, scholarship, etc.) able to be held or used: a scholarship of £200 per annum tenable for three years
More example sentences
  • The government is offering the scholarships in physical education tenable at Cuban universities for the academic year 2004 / 2005.
  • A draw was held for two half scholarships, tenable at the Adult Education College.
  • The badminton ace has won a three-year International Badminton Federation scholarship tenable in China.



Pronunciation: /tɛnəˈbɪlɪti/
Example sentences
  • The writings of the various authors were examined and evaluated to assess the current tenability of the author's thought.
  • One need not evaluate the scientific evidence for the assertions made to question the tenability of the propositions.
  • We have yet to examine a few other challenges to the tenability of the theory.




Late 16th century: from French, from tenir 'to hold', from Latin tenere.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: ten|able

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.