Definition of possibility in English:

possibility

nounpossibilities

  • 1A thing that may happen or be the case.

    ‘relegation remains a distinct possibility’
    with clause ‘there was the possibility that he might be turned down’
    • ‘There is always a possibility of unfairness and if a mistake is made nothing can be done about it.’
    • ‘Feeling remorse, there is always the possibility of applying the remedy to purify any wrong we have done.’
    • ‘There was always the possibility of a change in personal or family fortune.’
    • ‘You know how we've always talked about the possibility of something going wrong with the bomb.’
    • ‘There may be risks in some forms of exchange, but the possibility of exchange is always present.’
    • ‘Of course, students always have the possibility of getting a student bank account.’
    • ‘She had found a scratch-card which promised her the possibility of wealth beyond her tiny dreams.’
    • ‘The question remains whether the possibility of any such system is dependent on the existence of language.’
    • ‘Accepting what you have and enjoying it, but always being open to the possibility of something better.’
    • ‘One might object that his account draws on the possibility of a merely possible world.’
    • ‘It was a hope I was holding onto, because the possibility of success was so attractive.’
    • ‘Who can turn down the possibility of winning £1000 for what they do everyday anyway?’
    • ‘It transcends reality and opens up, for a moment, the possibility of a better life.’
    • ‘Now I'm thinking about the possibility of spending a year volunteering abroad.’
    • ‘I mean as well as the possibility of failure, there's also the chance of success that is just as heart racing.’
    • ‘Maybe they were celebrating the possibility of their recognition as equal.’
    • ‘It was there he discovered the possibility of using steel as a sculptural medium.’
    • ‘The two men discussed the possibility of staging a 1980s music show in Wiltshire.’
    • ‘Then we talked about the possibility of Amy writing a book for us - many years before she actually did.’
    • ‘Originally a garden, by then the site was home to a large shed that had the possibility of being converted into a house.’
    chance, likelihood, probability, prospect, hope
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1mass noun The state or fact of being possible; likelihood.
      ‘there is no possibility of any government achieving this level of expenditure’
      • ‘In such a case there is no possibility of double jeopardy and no risk of double recovery.’
      • ‘The radiation emitted is, as you say, miniscule - so small that there is no possibility of harm.’
      • ‘But there was no possibility of that because racial subjugation was enforced by law.’
      • ‘Because of his actions, he knows there can be no possibility of reconciliation.’
      • ‘Try to find a quiet place that has no possibility of disturbance or interruption.’
      • ‘There was no possibility of that site not contaminating the two streams and the harbour.’
      • ‘When women and men live in a society, the possibility of violations always exists.’
      • ‘There was always the possibility of getting shot if the clientele disapproved of the set list.’
      • ‘Because every time we did there was always the possibility of a major collision.’
      • ‘The Fenians always faced the possibility of being infiltrated by British spies.’
      • ‘It also had unconquered tribes with whom there was always the possibility of war.’
      • ‘Be alert to the possibility of rare but potentially serious underlying causes.’
      • ‘At this stage his future is very much up in the air as is the possibility of him remaining a United player.’
      • ‘At the moment the possibility of feedback is low, though the potential already exists.’
      • ‘This work is making the possibility of xenotransplants much closer than ever before.’
      • ‘All serving members have considered the possibility of having someone shoot at them.’
      • ‘I'm investigating the possibility of consolidating my debts into my mortgage.’
      • ‘Within minutes, the plane bombed the front and rear of the convoy, sealing off the possibility of escape.’
      • ‘In soccer and boxing there is also the possibility of brain damage due to repeated blows to the head.’
      • ‘I want to look in to the possibility of a rooftop garden on the roof of our apartment parking garage.’
      feasibility, practicability, chances, odds, attainability, achievability, potentiality, conceivability, probability
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2A thing that may be chosen or done out of several possible alternatives.
      ‘one possibility is to allow all firms to participate’
      • ‘He was not defensive, and prepared to admit alternative possibilities as possibilities.’
      • ‘Can you talk about how and why it was humanism that triumphed over alternative possibilities?’
      • ‘This was true even though an education by Catholic monks offered alternative possibilities.’
      • ‘Here is the opportunity to study, with an open mind, alternative possibilities.’
      • ‘And this sort of self-expression does not require alternative possibilities.’
      • ‘Which alternative possibilities in the Third Reich were never even entertained as such by the leadership?’
      • ‘Which of all the uneliminated alternative possibilities may not properly be ignored?’
      • ‘Another possibility would see extra cash given to bring down landing charges.’
      • ‘Rather, they are contested systems that allow competing possibilities to be realised.’
      • ‘Building a heavy rail link would prove much more costly, but would allow greater possibilities.’
      • ‘Several spaghetti-based dishes are available, as well as a choice of pork possibilities.’
      • ‘It is because of this that we are able to see the hint of the possibilities of some real solutions.’
      • ‘It was curated to allow a range of possibilities to be seen together.’
      • ‘Out of all you could have become, out of all the possibilities your freedom allowed you, you chose this.’
      • ‘All three possibilities might allow for high fitness of hybrids in a new environment.’
      • ‘This theoretically allowed eight possibilities of their combination in address.’
      • ‘The obvious choice among these three possibilities is the first.’
      • ‘Choices and possibilities forked off in all directions, leading off into futures unknown.’
      • ‘An alternative to this possibility is for a midwife to be present at a hospital birth.’
      option, alternative, choice, course of action, solution, recourse
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    3. 1.3possibilitiesUnspecified qualities of a promising nature; potential.
      ‘the house was old but it had possibilities’
      • ‘Obviously, our hopes have been bigger than the qualities and possibilities of these people.’
      • ‘The potentialities and possibilities of the electronic medium have been put to use to achieve this end.’
      • ‘One of the most promising possibilities is the developing of flour-based food products.’
      • ‘There, he realised his own potential and possibilities in working with wood and granite.’
      • ‘I seem to remember this sort of thing being one of the promised possibilities of stem cell research.’
      potential, potentiality, promise, prospects
      View synonyms

Origin

Late Middle English from Old French possibilite, from late Latin possibilitas, from possibilis ‘able to be done’ (see possible).

Pronunciation

possibility

/ˌpɒsɪˈbɪlɪti/