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[dir-i-juh-buh l, dih-rij-uh-] /ˈdɪr ɪ dʒə bəl, dɪˈrɪdʒ ə-/
an airship.
designed for or capable of being directed, controlled, or steered.
Origin of dirigible
1575-85; 1905-10 for noun; < Latin dīrig(ere) to direct + -ible
Related forms
dirigibility, noun
nondirigibility, noun
nondirigible, adjective, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for dirigible
Historical Examples
  • Gas is indispensable in the operation of dirigible balloons, and gas is expensive.

    Flying Machines W.J. Jackman and Thos. H. Russell
  • The dirigible swung; white-clad shoulders and body slumped into view.

    Raiders Invisible Desmond Winter Hall
  • The crew of that dirigible of death, Chris discovered, had not had a chance.

    Raiders Invisible Desmond Winter Hall
  • Theoretically, there is no limit to the lift of a dirigible.

    With The Night Mail Rudyard Kipling
  • You can please yourself, but—you might as well choose a dirigible.

    With The Night Mail Rudyard Kipling
  • You are the dirigible force, the last brick in the building, the final answer.

    Highways in Hiding George Oliver Smith
  • The dirigible balloon was of the Zeppelin type, and was not always dependable.

    The Sequel George A. Taylor
  • "Nothing but a dirigible, commanded by the right man," Dave explained.

  • "It's an airship, a dirigible," announced the executive officer.

  • "If an English dirigible, then it's all right," Dave nodded.

British Dictionary definitions for dirigible


able to be steered or directed
another name for airship
Derived Forms
dirigibility, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin dīrigere to direct
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 dirigible

"airship," 1885, from French dirigeable, literally "capable of being directed or guided," from Latin dirigere (see direct (v.)). The word existed as an adjective in English from 1580s, with the literal sense.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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