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[uh-mee-nuh-buh l, uh-men-uh-] /əˈmi nə bəl, əˈmɛn ə-/
ready or willing to answer, act, agree, or yield; open to influence, persuasion, or advice; agreeable; submissive; tractable:
an amenable servant.
liable to be called to account; answerable; legally responsible:
You are amenable for this debt.
capable of or agreeable to being tested, tried, analyzed, etc.
Origin of amenable
1590-1600; < Anglo-French, equivalent to Middle French amen(er) to lead to (a- a-5 + mener < Late Latin mināre for Latin minārī to drive) + -able -able
Related forms
amenability, amenableness, noun
amenably, adverb
nonamenability, noun
nonamenable, adjective
nonamenableness, noun
nonamenably, adverb
unamenable, adjective
unamenably, adverb
Can be confused
amenable, amendable, emendable.
1. manageable, docile, easy. 3. open, subject.
1. stubborn, recalcitrant. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for amenability
Historical Examples
  • The chimpanzee differs from the gorilla in his amenability to civilisation.

  • Slowly Tom rose and went, prodded into amenability by the muzzle of a rifle in the small of his back.

    When 'Bear Cat' Went Dry Charles Neville Buck
  • The great issue was the amenability of the clergy to the civil tribunals.

  • Because of his amenability the Alimentive can marry almost any type and be happy.

    How to Analyze People on Sight

    Elsie Lincoln Benedict and Ralph Paine Benedict
  • Sulkiness at being thus thwarted replaced her earlier attempt at amenability.

  • Until the clansmen had opened and aired the festering sores of their grievances there lay in them no hope of amenability.

    The Tempering

    Charles Neville Buck
British Dictionary definitions for amenability


open or susceptible to suggestion; likely to listen, cooperate, etc
accountable for behaviour to some authority; answerable
capable of being or liable to be tested, judged, etc
Derived Forms
amenability, amenableness, noun
amenably, adverb
Word Origin
C16: from Anglo-French, from Old French amener to lead up, from Latin mināre to drive (cattle), from minārī to threaten
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 amenability

1761; see amenable + -ity.



1590s, "liable," from Anglo-French amenable, Middle French amener "answerable" (to the law), from à "to" (see ad-) + mener "to lead," from Latin minare "to drive (cattle) with shouts," variant of minari "threaten" (see menace (n.)). Sense of "tractable" is from 1803, from notion of disposed to answer or submit to influence. Related: Amenably.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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