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noun, plural pos·si·bil·i·ties for 2.
  1. the state or fact of being possible: the possibility of error.
  2. something possible: He had exhausted every possibility but one.
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Origin of possibility

1325–75; Middle English possibilite < Late Latin possibilitās. See possible, -ity


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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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Examples from the Web for possibilities

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • They are valuable, but he can do but common things with them because he knows not their possibilities.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • They are barren, till the imagination has tenanted them with possibilities of danger and dismay.


    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • One could not help feeling that he had studied the possibilities, and felt the danger.

  • She had studied much over the possibilities of this girl's costume.

  • Do you see the possibilities, or the certainties of failure?

British Dictionary definitions for possibilities


noun plural -ties
  1. the state or condition of being possible
  2. anything that is possible
  3. a competitor, candidate, etc, who has a moderately good chance of winning, being chosen, etc
  4. (often plural) a future prospect or potentialmy new house has great possibilities
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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

Word Origin and History for possibilities



late 14c., "condition of being possible," from Old French possibilité (13c.) and directly from Latin possibilitatem (nom. possibilitas) "possibility," from possibilis (see possible (adj.)). Meaning "a possible thing or substance" is from c.1400. Related: Possibilities.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper