from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Lack of ability or means.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. lack of the ability to do something; incapability

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The quality or state of being unable; lack of ability; lack of sufficient power, strength, resources, or capacity.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The state of being unable, physically, mentally, or morally; want of ability; lack of power, capacity, or means: as, inability to perform a task, or to pay one's debts.
  • n. Specifically In theology, want of power to obey the law of God.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. lacking the power to perform
  • n. lack of ability (especially mental ability) to do something


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • I do want to point out that a spokesperson for Ralph Lauren told us today they let her go because of what they called her inability to meet obligations under her contract.

    CNN Transcript Oct 14, 2009

  • This inability is again demonstrated by your comment:

    ID Research, Look to the Example

  • Again, the reason for this inability is the aesthetic form of art since any such synthesis would erase the struggle in which the individual is brought to an experience of freedom [10].

    Indifferent Freedom

  • Remember that what you call your inability God calls your guilt; and that this inability is a wilful thing.

    God's Way of Peace: A Book for the Anxious

  • The book discusses what he calls the inability of elected officials in both political parties to enact the serious reforms the country needs to not only properly respond to the economic crisis but to address the nation's other long-term challenges.

    Blog entry

  • He called the inability to put West Virginia into the GOP column “a marvel,” notwithstanding the fact that Clinton carried the state by 14 points four years earlier.


  • The suggestion that women are not advancing in science because of innate inability is being taken seriously by some high-profile academics.

    Archive 2006-07-01

  • ‘Dissociative amnesia is characterized by an inability to recall important personal information, usually of a traumatic or stressful nature, that is too extensive to be explained by ordinary forgetfulness.’


  • What I think you can argue, though I don't think we're there yet, is that given what is happening now in the country and the possible long-term inability of the Americans and the British to control the country sufficient to allow the emergence of a representative government, that we were perhaps too optimistic in assuming the Americans and British could control it.

    CNN Transcript May 22, 2004

  • Indeed, to ignore this inability is to cross the limit demanded by art as the limit of its form, of its difference to an objective world that would subject it to the banality of mere existence.

    Indifferent Freedom


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  • Alas, Flickr hates me.

    January 16, 2017

  • You could take a picture of your 'hello bilby!' tattoo and upload it to Flickr.


    January 15, 2017

  • I would love to respond to ruzuzu and bilby, who posted comments on "the user chained_bear," but I seem to have an inability to do so. So I'll do it here. Hi ruzuzu! Hi bilby!

    January 14, 2017