1. Carried or moved with ease: a portable typewriter; a portable generator.
2. Capable of being transferred from one employer to another. Used of an employee benefit.
3. Computers Relating to or being software that can run on two or more kinds of computers or with two or more kinds of operating systems.
4. Obsolete Bearable; endurable.
Something, such as a light or small typewriter, that can be carried or moved with ease.
[Middle English, from Old French, from Late Latin portābilis, from Latin portāre, to carry; see per-2 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
por′ta·bili·ty, porta·ble·ness n.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.