Verb afford Definition and Examples



Definition as verb:


afford (third-person singular simple present affords, present participle affording, simple past and past participle afforded)

  1. To incur, stand, or bear without serious detriment, as an act which might under other circumstances be injurious;—with an auxiliary, as can, could, might, etc.; to be able or rich enough.
  2. To offer, provide, or supply, as in selling, granting, expending, with profit, or without loss or too great injury.
  3. To give forth; to supply, yield, or produce as the natural result, fruit, or issue.
  4. To give, grant, or confer, with a remoter reference to its being the natural result; to provide; to furnish.

More definition: be able to do, manage, or bear without serious consequence or adverse effect, The country can't afford another drought. be able to meet the expense of; have or be able to spare the price of, Can we afford a trip to Europe this year? The city can easily afford to repair the street. be able to give or spare, He can't afford the loss of a day. furnish; supply, The transaction afforded him a good profit. be capable of yielding or providing, The records afford no explanation. give or confer upon, to afford great pleasure to someone.

1. preceded by can, could, etc. to be able to do or spare something, esp without incurring financial difficulties or without risk of undesirable consequences, we can afford to buy a small house, I can afford to give you one of my chess sets, we can't afford to miss this play

2. to give, yield, or supply, the meeting afforded much useful information Derived Formsaffordable, adjectiveaffordability, noun Word OriginOld English geforthian to further, promote, from forthforth; the Old English prefix ge- was later reduced to a-, and the modern spelling (C16) is influenced by words beginning aff-Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollinsPublishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012 Cite This Source
Old English geforðian "to put forth, contribute; further, advance; carry out, accomplish," from ge- completive prefix (see a- (1)) + forðian "to further," from forð "forward, onward" (see forth).Change of -th- to -d- took place late 16c. (and also transformed burthen and murther into their modern forms). Prefix shift to af- took place 16c. under mistaken belief that it was a Latin word in ad-. Notion of "accomplish" (late Old English) gradually became "manage to buy or maintain; have enough money (to do something)" (1833). Older sense is preserved in afford (one) an opportunity. Related, Afforded; affording.


Could they afford to buy a van?

What did Giddon do to afford such finery?

Still, neither of them could afford to move out right now, so their relationship would have to remain a secret.

I need a larger house for my family and I can't afford the prices around here.

Dean wondered if Bird Song could afford the food bill as he sat down and joined Pumpkin for a cup of coffee.

He couldn't afford to now but there was a part of him that hurt.

Wealthy people could afford to choose scarce antiques.

Her first thought went to Evelyn's wedding, and another thrill went through her as she realized she could actually afford something nice for her friend.

With the dough we made on the room, we can afford to come over from Denver for another weekend!

Anyway, I simply can't afford it.

As if we could afford to.

If he wanted more land, he could afford to buy it... couldn't he?

No. It's just that I can't afford it.

I can't bear the thought of selling it, and I can't afford to park it, buy another one and pay insurance on both.

Salmon and trout afford good fishing.

In other words, food is present, but some cannot afford it.

I do not mean to insist here on the disadvantage of hiring compared with owning, but it is evident that the savage owns his shelter because it costs so little, while the civilized man hires his commonly because he cannot afford to own it; nor can he, in the long run, any better afford to hire.

Mademoiselle Bourienne took from her reticule a proclamation (not printed on ordinary Russian paper) of General Rameau's, telling people not to leave their homes and that the French authorities would afford them proper protection.

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