Definition of


  1. (verb, social) make it possible through a specific action or lack of action for something to happen
    This sealed door won't allow the water come into the basement
    This will permit the rain to run off
  2. (verb, communication) consent to, give permission
    I won't let the police search her basement
    I cannot allow you to see your exam
  3. (verb, possession) let have
    Mandela was allowed few visitors in prison
  4. (verb, cognition) give or assign a resource to a particular person or cause
    She sets aside time for meditation every day
  5. (verb, stative) make a possibility or provide opportunity for; permit to be attainable or cause to remain
    The evidence allows only one conclusion
    allow for mistakes
    leave lots of time for the trip
    This procedure provides for lots of leeway
  6. (verb, cognition) allow or plan for a certain possibility; concede the truth or validity of something
    The seamstress planned for 5% shrinkage after the first wash
  7. (verb, stative) afford possibility
    This short story allows of several different interpretations
  8. (verb, social) allow the other (baseball) team to score
  9. (verb, possession) grant as a discount or in exchange
  10. (verb, communication) allow the presence of or allow (an activity) without opposing or prohibiting
    Children are not permitted beyond this point
    We cannot tolerate smoking in the hospital

via WordNet, Princeton University

Antonyms of Allow

deny, disallow

Origin of the word Allow

  1. c.1300, from O.Fr. alouer "approve," from L. allaudare, compound of ad- "to" + laudare "to praise," confused and merged in O.Fr. with alouer "assign," from L. allocare (see allocate). From the first word came the sense "permission based on approval," from the second the meaning preserved in allowance. more

via Online Etymology Dictionary, ©2001 Douglas Harper

Words that sound like Allow

aalii, aeolia, ail, ailey, aioli, al, ala, alalia, ale, alee, ali, aliyah, all, allah, allay, allele, alley, alleyway, alloy, ally, allyl, aloe, aloha, alula, awheel, awhile, awl, awol

via soundex() Hash Matches

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