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verb (used with object), pre·dis·posed, pre·dis·pos·ing.
  1. to give an inclination or tendency to beforehand; make susceptible: Genetic factors may predispose human beings to certain metabolic diseases.
  2. to render subject, susceptible, or liable: The evidence predisposes him to public censure.
  3. to dispose beforehand.
  4. Archaic. to dispose of beforehand, as in a will, legacy, or the like.
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verb (used without object), pre·dis·posed, pre·dis·pos·ing.
  1. to give or furnish a tendency or inclination: an underground job that predisposes to lung infection.
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Origin of predispose

First recorded in 1640–50; pre- + dispose
Related formspre·dis·pos·al, nounpre·dis·pos·ed·ly [pree-di-spoh-zid-lee, -spohzd-] /ˌpri dɪˈspoʊ zɪd li, -ˈspoʊzd-/, adverbpre·dis·pos·ed·ness, nounun·pre·dis·posed, adjectiveun·pre·dis·pos·ing, adjective


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

Related Words


Examples from the Web for predisposed

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • On the other hand, the invert would have no influence on an individual who was not predisposed.

  • Had she not been predisposed to think her father in the right?

    We Two

    Edna Lyall

  • Protection of children about to enter industry but predisposed to tuberculosis.

    Civics and Health

    William H. Allen

  • A man who has bought a house with nothing to pay for it is also predisposed to clutch.

    The House

    Eugene Field

  • But no girl gets "outed," as you call it, unless she's predisposed that way.

British Dictionary definitions for predisposed


verb (tr)
  1. (often foll by to or towards) to incline or make (someone) susceptible to something beforehand
  2. mainly law to dispose of (property, etc) beforehand; bequeath
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Derived Formspredisposal, noun
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 predisposed



1640s, "to put into a certain frame of mind," perhaps a back-formation from predisposition. Related: Predisposed; predisposing.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

predisposed in Medicine


  1. To make susceptible, as to a disease.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.