Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for sufficient in
Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.)

Alternative formsEdit


From Old French sufisanz, soficient, from Latin sufficiēns, present participle of sufficiō.


  • IPA(key): /səˈfɪʃənt/
  • (file)
  • Hyphenation: suf‧fi‧cient
  • Rhymes: -ɪʃənt


sufficient (comparative more sufficient, superlative most sufficient)

  1. Equal to the end proposed; adequate to what is needed; enough
    We have provision sufficient for the family
    This army is sufficient to defend the country.
    There is not sufficient access to the internet in many small rural villages.
    Synonyms: ample, competent
  2. Possessing adequate talents or accomplishments; of competent power or ability; qualified; fit.
    • 1842, Nathanael Emmons & Jacob Ide, Social and civil duties, page 456:
      They felt sufficient to maintain their present prosperity and independence.
    • 1983, John MacArthur, Spiritual Gifts, →ISBN, page 98:
      I have never yet felt adequate. I have never yet felt sufficient.
    A two-week training course is sufficient to get a job in the coach-driving profession.
  3. (archaic) Capable of meeting obligations; responsible.
    • 1668, Samuel Pepys, Diary of Samuel Pepys December 23 1668 take the best ways we can, to make it known to the Duke of York; for, till Sir J. Minnes be removed, and a sufficient man brought into W. Pen's place, when he is gone, it is impossible for this Office ever to support itself.
  4. (obsolete) Having enough money to meet obligations and live comfortably.
    • 1766, Bulstrode Whitlocke & Charles Morton, Whitelockes Notes Uppon The Kings Writt For Choosing Members Of Parlement:
      I shall in this place only mention that qualification by wealth; the rather, being applyed to the deputies of towns and citties, where they use to say of a rich man, he is a very sufficient man : and the other sufficiencies and qualifications are mentioned on other occasions.
    • 1816, Thomas Bayly Howell & Thomas Jones Howell, A Complete Collection of State Trials and Proceedings for High Treason and Other Crimes and Misdemeanors from the Earliest Period to the Year 1783:
      Some persons have been called, who have proved (it is true) that he was insufficient at that time, and could not pay more than 3 or 4,000l.; but the same witnesses give an account, that his ill circumstances were then known but to four or five persons of his acquaintance, and that by all other people, who had any knowledge of him at that time, he was looked upon to be very sufficient ; he had left off his business upon having raised an estate; he was of good reputation: he lived at Hackne in a house making a good appearance, with good furniture, and a great quanity of plate, till the last, till the time of his being put in prison, which was not till last year, that he surrendered himself in discharge of his bail.
    • 1830, Great Britain Parliament House of Commons; Select Committee on the East India Company, Reports from the Select Committee[s] of the House of Commons Appointed to Enquire into the Present State of the Affairs of the East-India Company:
      The second in the Hong, Mowgua, has been a man of large property, but he is of more questionable property now ; I consider him still to be a very sufficient merchant.


Derived termsEdit

Related termsEdit


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

See alsoEdit



  1. The smallest amount needed.
    Sufficient of us are against this idea that we should stop now.


Further readingEdit




  1. third-person plural future active indicative of sufficiō