Definition 1: Interchangeable; in legal terms, something that can be substituted for a like measure or amount of the same thing, as one bushel of apples for another,
in order to satisfy an obligation.
Usage 1: An object that is fungible can be called a "fungible," so the noun form is the same as the adjective. In chemical engineering, a fungible petroleum product
is one that has similar characteristics to others, so they can be blendedan example of a useful word being taken from one discipline (lawsee the etymology) and given a
specific definition by another discipline.
Suggested usage: Today's word is most applicable when one is demanding restitution for a wrongdoing: "I don't consider an apology to be fungible for the damage you
did to the birdbath and lawnmowerthree months' worth of your allowance would be more like it!" "Fungible" can lend itself to debates about who finished what from the
refrigerator, as well: "The vanilla and strawberry left unmolested in a carton of Neapolitan ice cream are not fungible for your eating every bit of the chocolate by
Etymology: Today's word carries the history of British legal code with it. In medieval England (c.1100 to c.1500), the language of law was Latin; indeed, throughout
the Western world, Latin was the lingua franca because of the dominance of the Roman Catholic Church. "Fungible" derives from the legal, secular use of Latin during the
Middle Ages. It comes from the Medieval (New) Latin "fungibilis," which comes from fungi "vice-, to perform (in place of)." (Our thanks, fungible with our gratitude, are due
to Brian Brady for today's legal contribution to the general language.)
Audra Himes, formerly, yourDictionary.com