Etymology
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unable (adj.)

late 14c., "lacking in ability, incapable," from un- (1) "not" + able (adj.). Modeled on Old French inhabile or Latin inhabilis.

updated on February 25, 2014

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Definitions of unable from WordNet

unable (adj.)
(usually followed by `to') lacking necessary physical or mental ability;
the sun was unable to melt enough snow
dyslexics are unable to learn to read adequately
unable (adj.)
(usually followed by `to') not having the necessary means or skill or know-how;
unable to get to town without a car
unable to obtain funds
unable (adj.)
lacking in power or forcefulness;
like an unable phoenix in hot ashes
Etymologies are not definitions. From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.