[moh-buhl, -beel or, esp. British, -bahyl]
capable of moving or being moved readily.
Digital Technology. pertaining to or noting a cell phone, usually one with computing ability, or a portable, wireless computing device used while held in the hand, as in mobile tablet; mobile PDA; mobile app.
utilizing motor vehicles for ready movement: a mobile library.
Military. permanently equipped with vehicles for transport.
flowing freely, as a liquid.
changeable or changing easily in expression, mood, purpose, etc.: a mobile face.
quickly responding to impulses, emotions, etc., as the mind.
characterized by or permitting the mixing of social groups.
characterized by or permitting relatively free movement from one social class or level to another.
of or pertaining to a mobile.
a piece of sculpture having delicately balanced units constructed of rods and sheets of metal or other material suspended in midair by wire or twine so that the individual parts can move independently, as when stirred by a breeze. Compare stabile ( def 3 ).
Informal. a mobile home.
Citizens Band Radio Slang. a vehicle.

1480–90; < Latin, neuter of mōbilis movable, equivalent to mō- (variant stem of movēre to move) + -bilis -ble

nonmobile, adjective
semimobile, adjective
unmobile, adjective Unabridged


[moh-beel, moh-beel]
a seaport in SW Alabama at the mouth of the Mobile River.
a river in SW Alabama, formed by the confluence of the Alabama and Tombigbee rivers. 38 miles (61 km) long.


a combining form extracted from automobile, occurring as the final element in compounds denoting specialized types of motorized conveyances: snowmobile; especially productive in coinages naming vehicles equipped to procure or deliver objects, provide services, etc., to people without regular access to these: bloodmobile; bookmobile; clubmobile; jazzmobile.

primum mobile

[pree-moom moh-bi-le; English prahy-muhm mob-uh-lee, pree-]
(in Ptolemaic astronomy) the outermost of the 10 concentric spheres of the universe, making a complete revolution every 24 hours and causing all the others to do likewise.

literally, first moving (thing) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
mobile (ˈməʊbaɪl)
1.  having freedom of movement; movable
2.  changing quickly in expression: a mobile face
3.  sociol (of individuals or social groups) moving within and between classes, occupations, and localities: upwardly mobile
4.  (of military forces) able to move freely and quickly to any given area
5.  informal (postpositive) having transport available: are you mobile tonight?
6.  a.  a sculpture suspended in midair with delicately balanced parts that are set in motion by air currents
 b.  Compare stabile (as modifier): mobile sculpture
7.  short for mobile phone
[C15: via Old French from Latin mōbilis, from movēre to move]

Mobile (ˈməʊbiːl, məʊˈbiːl)
a port in SW Alabama, on Mobile Bay (an inlet of the Gulf of Mexico): the state's only port and its first permanent settlement, made by French colonists in 1711. Pop: 193 464 (2003 est)

-mobile (məʊˌbiːl)
suffix forming nouns
indicating a vehicle designed for a particular person or purpose: Popemobile

primum mobile (ˈpraɪmʊm ˈməʊbɪlɪ)
1.  a prime mover
2.  astronomy the outermost empty sphere in the Ptolemaic system that was thought to revolve around the earth from east to west in 24 hours carrying with it the inner spheres of the planets, sun, moon, and fixed stars
[C15: from Medieval Latin: first moving (thing)]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

late 15c., from M.Fr. mobile, from L. mobilis "movable," from movere "to move" (see move). The noun is early 15c. in astronomy; the artistic sense is first recorded 1949 as a shortening of mobile sculpture (1936). Mobile home first recorded 1940.

primum mobile
"the first source of motion," 1460, from L. (11c.), lit. "the first movable thing;" see prime (adj.) + mobile. A translation of Ar. al-muharrik al-awwal "the first moving" (Avicenna, c.1037; Shahrastani, c.1153).

city in Alabama, U.S., attested c.1540 in Spanish as Mauvila, referring to an Indian group and perhaps from Choctaw (Muskogean) moeli "to paddle."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

mobile definition

A sculpture made up of suspended shapes that move.

Note: Alexander Calder, a twentieth-century American sculptor, is known for his mobiles.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences
Pepsi has mashed up an outdoor ad to be interactive and mobile.
Full disclosure: We're not sold on mobile video.
The next frontiers for mobile robots are the office, hospital and home.
The mobile Web is still considered an open — and largely untapped —
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