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Allow appears in the following palindromes (phrases that read the same backward as forward):

  • Sam, allow two cots to cow two llamas.
  • To lay aside poor dissipated acts in a non-AWOL lair, I allow an onanist cadet a piss: "I drooped!" I say a lot.
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The word allow is considered to be an easy one, according to the Dale-Chall word list, which includes 3000 words that all fourth-grade American students should know and understand.

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Definition of the verb allow

What does allow mean as a doing word?

Allow is one of the top 100 most common verbs in the English language.View more statistics!

verb - inflections: allowed | allowing | allows

  1. make it possible through a specific action or lack of action for something to happen
  2. consent to, give permission
  3. let have
    • example: Mandela was allowed few visitors in prison
    • lexical domain: Possession - verbs of buying, selling, owning
    • synonym of allow: grant
    • antonym of allow: deny
    • more generic word: give = transfer possession of something concrete or abstract to somebody
    • more specific words:
      • vouchsafe = grant in a condescending manner
      • allowance = put on a fixed allowance, as of food
  4. give or assign a resource to a particular person or cause
  5. make a possibility or provide opportunity for; permit to be attainable or cause to remain
    • examples: The evidence allows only one conclusion | allow for mistakes
    • syntax: the same syntax as for the sense 1
    • lexical domain: Stative - verbs of being, having, spatial relations
    • synonyms of allow: allow for / leave / provide
    • more generic words: afford / give / yield = be the cause or source of
  6. allow or plan for a certain possibility; concede the truth or validity of something
  7. afford possibility
    • example: This short story allows of several different interpretations
    • lexical domain: Stative - verbs of being, having, spatial relations
    • synonym of allow: admit
  8. allow the other (baseball) team to score
    • lexical domain: Activities - verbs of political and social activities and events
    • synonym of allow: give up
  9. grant as a discount or in exchange
    • example: The camera store owner allowed me $50 on my old camera
    • lexical domain: Possession - verbs of buying, selling, owning
    • more generic word: discount = give a reduction in price on
  10. allow the presence of or allow (an activity) without opposing or prohibiting

Alternative definition of the verb allow


  1. [transitive] To grant, give, admit, accord, afford, or yield; to let one have.
  2. [transitive] To acknowledge; to accept as true; to concede; to accede to an opinion.
  3. [transitive] To grant (something) as a deduction or an addition; especially to abate or deduct;
  4. [transitive] To grant license to; to permit; to consent to.
  5. To not bar or obstruct.
  6. [intransitive] To acknowledge or concede.
  7. [transitive] To take into account by making an allowance.
  8. [transitive] To render physically possible

Phrases with Allow

  1. allow in
  2. allow for
  3. to allow

Printed dictionaries and other books with definitions for Allow

Click on a title to look inside that book (if available):

Google previewProcurement Systems (2005)

A Guide to Best Practice in Construction by Steve Rowlinson, Peter McDermott

This is not to say that we will treat the subject areas superficially but what it does allow is a simplification of the model of the project process. Through this simplification a focus on specific elements can then be maintained. The type of ...

Google previewBlended Families (2000)

Creating Harmony as You Build a New Home Life by Maxine Marsolini

The word allow means to permit, consent to, or let one have. Thus allowance money is a predetermined amount of money we willingly give to another, in this case to our minor children. Since the nature of children is to learn by experience, ...

Google previewThe Judicial Dictionary: Judicial dictionary (1903)

by Frederick Stroud, Elsie May Wheeler, John McDonald Burke

ALLOW.β€”To β€œallow” a thing to be done or omitted, ...

Google previewSaunders Comprehensive Veterinary Dictionary (2011)

by Virginia P. Studdert, Clive C. Gay, Douglas C. Blood

Sutures mostlyserve to allow growth with limited movement. Each is named according to the participating bones, e.g. internasal suture, except for the coronal, sagittal and lambdoidal sutures (qq.v.) symphysis (NAV) amphiarthrosis ( outmoded) ...

Online dictionaries and encyclopedias with entries for Allow

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Usage statistics about allow

The following statistics are based on the British National Corpus, so they are representative for the British English from the later part of the 20th century, both spoken and written.

Usage statistics for the verb allow:

spoken English33.58%written English66.42% conversational speech36.89%task-oriented speech63.11% imaginative writing33.61%informational writing66.39%

Distribution of usage frequency for the most common synonyms of the verb allow:


Comparison of usage frequency between the verb allow and its most common antonyms:

denyallow disallowallow

Photos about Allow

If you need images about Allow for an article or a report, you can download stock photos at a very small price:
Small photo of Chia seeds contain high quality proteins that allow us to quickly gain muscle mass.Small photo of DUBAI, UAE - NOVEMBER 17: The Smart Palm is on Dubai Motor Show 2017 on November 17, 2017. It can generate around 7.2 kilowatt hours per day, allow people access Wi-Fi, and charge their phonesSmall photo of Travel insurance form put on a wood table. Many agent sells airplane tickets or travel packages allow consumers to purchase travel insurance also known as travelers insurance as an added service.Small photo of Allow or forbid? Allow.Small photo of DUBAI, UAE - NOVEMBER 17: The Smart Palm is on Dubai Motor Show 2017 on November 17, 2017. It can generate around 7.2 kilowatt hours per day, allow people access Wi-Fi, and charge their phonesSmall photo of Pyongyang,North Korea-August 15,2016:North Korean Metro in Pyongyang ,There are two lines but tourists allow to see in just only one line with short distance.Small photo of Saving money for house and car concept : Coins in three jars with label. Ideas of saving for a down payment on a car or home that allow buyers to use down payment to reduce overall cost of borrowing. More...

Video language resources about Allow

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See also the pronunciation examples of Allow!

Quotes about Allow

Poverty won't allow him to lift up his head; dignity won't allow him to bow it down.
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Scrabble value of A1L1L1O1W4

The value of this 5-letter word is 8 points. It is included in the first and second editions of the Official Scrabble Players Dictionary.

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