Definition of possibility in English:


Line breaks: pos¦si|bil¦ity
Pronunciation: /ˌpɒsɪˈbɪlɪti

noun (plural possibilities)

1A thing that may happen or be the case: relegation remains a distinct possibility [with clause]: there was the possibility that he might be turned down
More example sentences
  • There is always a possibility of unfairness and if a mistake is made nothing can be done about it.
  • Feeling remorse, there is always the possibility of applying the remedy to purify any wrong we have done.
  • There was always the possibility of a change in personal or family fortune.
1.1 [mass noun] The state or fact of being possible; likelihood: there is no possibility of any government achieving this level of expenditure
More example sentences
  • In such a case there is no possibility of double jeopardy and no risk of double recovery.
  • The radiation emitted is, as you say, miniscule - so small that there is no possibility of harm.
  • But there was no possibility of that because racial subjugation was enforced by law.
feasibility, practicability, chances, odds, attainability, achievability, potentiality, conceivability, probability; opportunity, scope
rare workableness
1.2A thing that may be chosen or done out of several possible alternatives: one possibility is to allow all firms to participate
More example sentences
  • He was not defensive, and prepared to admit alternative possibilities as possibilities.
  • Can you talk about how and why it was humanism that triumphed over alternative possibilities?
  • This was true even though an education by Catholic monks offered alternative possibilities.
option, alternative, choice, course of action, solution, recourse
informal bet
1.3 (possibilities) Unspecified qualities of a promising nature; potential: the house was old but it had possibilities
More example sentences
  • Obviously, our hopes have been bigger than the qualities and possibilities of these people.
  • The potentialities and possibilities of the electronic medium have been put to use to achieve this end.
  • One of the most promising possibilities is the developing of flour-based food products.
potential, potentiality, promise, prospects; capability, ability, aptitude, capacity
informal what it takes


late Middle English: from Old French possibilite, from late Latin possibilitas, from possibilis 'able to be done' (see possible).

Definition of possibility in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove ads and access premium resources

Word of the day anomalous
Pronunciation: əˈnämələs
deviating from what is standard, normal, or expected