- The definition of afford means to be able to do or have something without negative consequences occurring as a result.
An example of afford is being able to go on a vacation while still having enought money to pay bills for the home.
- to have enough or the means for; bear the cost of without serious inconvenience: used with can or be able: I'm not able to afford a car; can you afford the time?
- to manage (to do something) without risking serious consequences: used with can: I can afford to speak frankly
- to give; furnish: music affords her pleasure
Origin of affordMiddle English aforthen ; from Old English geforthian, to advance ; from forthian, to further
transitive verbaf·ford·ed, af·ford·ing, af·fords
- To have the financial means for; bear the cost of: able to afford a new car.
- To manage to spare or give up: can't afford an hour for lunch.
- To manage or bear without disadvantage or risk to oneself: can afford to be tolerant.
- To make available or have as a necessary feature; provide: a tree that affords ample shade; a sport affording good exercise.
Origin of affordMiddle English aforthen, from Old English geforthian, to carry out : ge-, perfective pref.; see yclept + forthian, to further (from forth, forth, forward; see per1 in Indo-European roots).
(third-person singular simple present affords, present participle affording, simple past and past participle afforded)
- 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.
- I think we can afford the extra hour it will take. We can only afford to buy a small car at the moment.
- To offer, provide, or supply, as in selling, granting, expending, with profit, or without loss or too great injury.
- A affords his goods cheaper than B. A man can afford a sum yearly in charity.
- To give forth; to supply, yield, or produce as the natural result, fruit, or issue.
- Grapes afford wine. Olives afford oil. The earth affords fruit. The sea affords an abundant supply of fish.
- To give, grant, or confer, with a remoter reference to its being the natural result; to provide; to furnish.
- A good life affords consolation in old age.
- Sense 1. This is a catenative verb that takes the to infinitive.
From Old English aforthen, from Old English ġeforþian, forþian (“to further, accomplish, afford”), from forþ (“forth, forward”). The prefix ġe- has no well defined sense. See forth.