noun, plural po·ten·ti·al·i·ties for 2.

the state or quality of being potential.
something potential; a possibility: Atomic destruction is a grim potentiality.

Origin of potentiality

From the Medieval Latin word potentiālitās, dating back to 1615–25. See potential, -ity
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for potentiality

wherewithal, capacity, ability, power, capability, potential, aptitude

Examples from the Web for potentiality

Contemporary Examples of potentiality

  • If I am right that this potentiality matters, what can Americans do to retain their historic leadership?

    The Daily Beast logo
    So What Would I Do About China?

    David Frum

    August 22, 2012

Historical Examples of potentiality

  • Of course, attack was by no 79means certain, but the potentiality of the situation was thrilling.

  • After all, there's the potentiality of every kind of man in every man.

    The Story of a Play

    W. D. Howells

  • The grounds of their potentiality in this respect can be easily stated.


    E. F. Benson

  • The potentiality of growing rich beyond the dreams of avarice.

    Familiar Quotations

    John Bartlett

  • For in his opinion what is material is composite and possessed of potentiality.

British Dictionary definitions for potentiality


noun plural -ties

latent or inherent capacity or ability for growth, fulfilment, etc
a person or thing that possesses such a capacity
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 potentiality

1620s, from potential + -ity, or else from Medieval Latin potentialitas, from potentialis (see potential).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper