[ kuh m-pat-uh-buh l ]
/ kəmˈpæt ə bəl /



something, as a machine or piece of electronic equipment, that is designed to perform the same tasks as another, often in the same way and using virtually identical parts, programmed instructions, etc.: Software written for one computer will probably run on its close compatibles.

Origin of compatible

1425–75; late Middle English < Medieval Latin compatibilis, derivative of Late Latin compatī (Latin com- com- + patī to suffer, undergo). See -ible

Related forms Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for compatibilities

  • This question of compatibilities is illustrated very strikingly by the case of the worker-bee.

    Woman and Womanhood|C. W. Saleeby

British Dictionary definitions for compatibilities


/ (kəmˈpætəbəl) /


(usually foll by with) able to exist together harmoniously
(usually foll by with) consistent or congruousher deeds were not compatible with her ideology
(of plants)
  1. capable of forming successful grafts
  2. capable of successful self-fertilizationSee self-compatible, self-incompatible
(of pieces of machinery, computer equipment, etc) capable of being used together without special modification or adaptationa PC-compatible disc

Derived Forms

compatibility or compatibleness, nouncompatibly, adverb

Word Origin for compatible

C15: from Medieval Latin compatibilis, from Late Latin compatī to be in sympathy with; see compassion
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

Medicine definitions for compatibilities


[ kəm-pătə-bəl ]


Capable of existing or performing in harmonious or agreeable combination.
Capable of being grafted, transfused, or transplanted from one individual to another without reaction or rejection.
Capable of forming a chemically or biochemically stable system.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.