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[en-ey-bling] /ɛnˈeɪ blɪŋ/
adjective, Law.
conferring new legal powers or capacities, especially by removing a disability; having the right to license or regulate:
an enabling act; enabling power.
Origin of enabling
1670-80; enable + -ing2


[en-ey-buh l] /ɛnˈeɪ bəl/
verb (used with object), enabled, enabling.
to make able; give power, means, competence, or ability to; authorize:
This document will enable him to pass through the enemy lines unmolested.
to make possible or easy:
Aeronautics enables us to overcome great distances.
to make ready; equip (often used in combination):
Web-enabled cell phones.
1375-1425; Middle English; see en-1, able
Related forms
enabler, noun
preenable, verb (used with object), preenabled, preenabling.
1. empower, qualify, allow, permit. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for enabling
  • Tells of the family performance, and how only one ring is occupied at a time, enabling the audience to see the whole show.
  • Great strides are being made in the quality of online courses, enabling a revolution in service to nontraditional students.
  • If this is a feature that you've come to count on, you should weigh the pros and cons of enabling multiple sign-in.
  • It was liberating and enabling, as subsequent outputs show.
  • In general it benefits us by enabling investments to be made by us all.
  • Narratives are enabling precisely because they are partial representations.
  • Sunlight penetrates deep into the clear waters, enabling lush gardens of corals to flourish along these wave-washed coasts.
  • But the sky later cleared, enabling a successful liftoff.
  • The operation gave the locomotive a new lease on life, enabling it this month to achieve the fastest speed it had ever attained.
  • Data is fed from the antenna to the robot controller, enabling it to sense its position.
British Dictionary definitions for enabling


verb (transitive)
to provide (someone) with adequate power, means, opportunity, or authority (to do something)
to make possible
to put (a digital electronic circuit element) into an operative condition by supplying a suitable input pulse
Derived Forms
enablement, noun
enabler, noun
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 enabling



early 15c., "to make fit;" mid-15c., "to make able to," from en- (1) "make, put in" + able. Related: Enabled; enabling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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enabling in Technology
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010
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