"You canker blossom!" 3 Shakespearean Insults


[dih-bey-tuh-buh l] /dɪˈbeɪ tə bəl/
open to question; in dispute; doubtful:
Whether or not he is qualified for the job is debatable.
capable of being debated.
Origin of debatable
late Middle English
1425-75; late Middle English < Middle French. See debate, -able
Related forms
nondebatable, adjective
undebatable, adjective
1. questionable, dubious, arguable, disputable. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for debatable
  • The case for evolution presented by this shared ornithological evidence nevertheless remained debatable for nearly a decade.
  • Whether it is appropriate in this story is debatable.
  • What the government can do to improve the economy is speculative and debatable.
  • Then you have topics that are ethically debatable, such as lie detection.
  • Cheap is debatable of course, but comfortable and safe to be certain.
  • The relevance of these results to the origins of life is debatable, but there's no denying their influence.
  • It seems to be the biggest factor, perhaps debatable, but almost certainly true.
  • He is a true undead, such as he will be actually physically possible to construct, which is debatable.
  • Whether malleable teens are likely to copy the acts they see is debatable.
  • While there is much to debate, and there is much that is debatable about your response, this dialog is important.
British Dictionary definitions for debatable


open to question; disputable
(law) in dispute, as land or territory to which two parties lay claim
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for debatable

1530s (late 15c. in Anglo-Latin), from Old French debatable (Modern French débattable), from debatre (see debate (v.)). Earliest references were to lands claimed by two nations; general sense is from 1580s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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