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qual·i·fy (kwŏlə-fī)
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v. qual·i·fied, qual·i·fy·ing, qual·i·fies
v.tr.
1.
a. To make competent or eligible for an office, position, or task: Your experience qualifies you for this job.
b. To declare competent or capable, as to practice a profession; certify: This diploma qualifies you to teach in public schools.
c. To render deserving of a descriptor by having or enumerating certain necessary characteristics: Do the student's ongoing difficulties in class qualify his situation as a medical problem?
2.
a. To modify, limit, or restrict, as by listing exceptions or reservations: I would qualify my praise of his enthusiasm with a warning about rashness.
b. To make less harsh or severe; moderate: I qualified my criticism to avoid offending anyone. See Synonyms at moderate.
3. Grammar To modify the meaning of (a noun, for example).
v.intr.
1. To be or become qualified: The performance qualifies as one of the best I've ever seen.
2. To reach the later stages of a selection process or contest by competing successfully in earlier rounds.

[From French qualifier (from Old French) and from Middle English qualifien, to specify the time and place of a document's execution, both from Medieval Latin quālificāre, to attribute a quality to : Latin quālis, of such a kind; see QUALITY + Latin -ficāre, -fy.]

quali·fia·ble adj.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 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:

    Indo-European Roots

    Semitic Roots

    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.

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