English Dictionary

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liable (ˈlaɪəbəl Pronunciation for liable


adjective (postpositive)

  1. legally obliged or responsible; answerable
  2. susceptible or exposed; subject
  3. probable, likely, or capable   ⇒ it's liable to happen soon
The use of liable to to mean likely to was formerly considered incorrect, but is now acceptable

Derived Forms

ˈliableness noun

Word Origin

C15: perhaps via Anglo-French, from Old French lier to bind, from Latin ligāre

Translations for 'liable'

  • British English: liable When something is liable to happen, it is very likely to happen. ADJECTIVEHe is liable to change his mind quite rapidly.likely
  • Brazilian Portuguese: passível
  • Chinese: 可能会可能会會
  • European Spanish: probable
  • French: susceptible
  • German: wahrscheinlich
  • Italian: avere molte probabilità di
  • Japanese: ~しそうである
  • Korean: ~할 경향이 있는
  • Portuguese: passível
  • Spanish: probable
  • British English: liable If people or things are liable to something unpleasant, they are likely to experience it or do it. ADJECTIVEShe will grow into a woman particularly liable to depression.susceptible
  • Brazilian Portuguese: passível
  • Chinese: 易于…的易于於…的
  • European Spanish: propenso propensa
  • French: sujet sujette
  • German: anfällig für
  • Italian: soggetto soggetta
  • Japanese: 陥りやすい
  • Korean: ~하기 쉬운
  • Portuguese: passível
  • Spanish: propenso propensa

Example Sentences Including 'liable'

But I do reiterate, anyone caught acting in breach of a prohibition order is liable to two years ' imprisonment.
But Mr Blunkett said they would be under strict licence and liable to immediate recall if there was any concern about a risk.
Glasgow Herald (2001)
Growing celery from seed is tricky and is liable to produce plants that bolt.
Kitto, Dick Planning the Organic Vegetable Garden
He did not say whether anyone at the firm might be criminally liable.
Globe and Mail (2003)
It enhances personal responsibility by making the defaulting person liable.
Spiked (2003)
It wasn't enough for him we were liable to be on American television, seen by thousands of people.
Laurie Graham MR STARLIGHT (2004)
She fell back on what she was always liable to say in such situations.
Ferrars, Elizabeth Thy Brother Death
The State, that is the taxpayer, was also liable for further legal costs of around £200,000.
Irish Times (2002)
To the extent that the trustees own UK assets, any income generated will be liable to UK income tax.
Glasgow Herald (2001)


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