Suffixes are groups of letters we add to the root of the word to form a new word. The list of suffixes in English is long and today we are going to discuss adjectives with the suffix ‘-able’. The suffix ‘-able’ is normally added to verbs to form adjectives that mean ‘capable of’ (read + able = readable – can be read). It can also carry a meaning of suitability and preference (e.g. comfortable, likeable).

Let’s look at some examples of the adjectives with the suffix -able:


Meaning:  having the ability to do something.

  • Sara is capable of typing very fast.
  • You can’t leave your children home alone all weekend. They’re not capable of taking care of themselves.


Meaning: (can be bought cheaply), cheap enough.

  • These holiday arrangements are really affordable. I think I’ll buy one.
  • You can find some good and affordable computers in this store.


Meaning: (can be approached easily), friendly and easy to talk to.

  • Despite being famous, Larry is very approachable.
  • There’s been a terrible storm and some areas are no longer approachable.


Meaning: can be bought or used.

  • Tickets for the concert are available from the box office.
  • Agatha Christie’s books are available in bookshops all around the world.


Meaning: can be predicted easily.

  • The ending of the book was totally predictable.
  • Clara’s boyfriend is so predictable. He always wants to stay at home and watch football.


Meaning: can be eaten.

  • The root of the vegetable is edible, while the rest of it is not.
  • You have to be careful when buying mushrooms because most of them are not edible.


Meaning: can be seen or noticed easily.

  • There is a noticeable change in her behaviour after she’d been reprimanded.
  • The teacher saw a noticeable improvement in the students’ pronunciation.


Meaning: can be recognized easily.

  • The voice of the radio star was recognizable to many children.
  • Martin’s drawings were instantly recognizable.


Meaning: worth and useful.

  • Sesame is a valuable source of vitamin C.
  • The police officer was very grateful for valuable feedback from the citizens.


Meaning: significant, important.

  • Ryan was a considerable man in the music world.
  • It took us a considerable length of time to get to our destination.

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