Definition of tolerate in US English:

tolerate

verb

[with object]
  • 1Allow the existence, occurrence, or practice of (something that one does not necessarily like or agree with) without interference.

    ‘a regime unwilling to tolerate dissent’
    • ‘Other societies have grudgingly tolerated prostitution as a safeguard for the family.’
    • ‘So how can a community tolerate a custom or practice which itself is criminal?’
    • ‘Similarly, in North Korea dissent is not tolerated.’
    • ‘I promise you, that kind of behavior will not be tolerated under any circumstances.’
    • ‘He said this would not be allowed in a court of law and should not be tolerated at the oral hearing.’
    • ‘What company could tolerate an employee violating a basic rule of employment and of security?’
    • ‘No dissent is tolerated and concerned citizens who are vocal are considered special interest groups.’
    • ‘The protest was a rare event in a country where political dissent isn't tolerated.’
    • ‘Nor can Bulgaria afford to have its image besmeared again by being seen to be tolerating such practices.’
    • ‘Liberalism is, therefore, utopian; it tolerates no regime but itself.’
    • ‘We are operating under de facto one-party rule within which no dissent is tolerated.’
    • ‘The Taliban had their grip firmly on the levers of power in Afghanistan, and tolerated no opposition or dissent.’
    • ‘This shocking and disgraceful practice should not be tolerated in any society.’
    • ‘Dissenting voices cannot be tolerated, because they imply that a conservative future may not last forever.’
    • ‘Those who knew him were aware he would not tolerate dissent like that, but would pick his time.’
    • ‘Under these conditions, it cannot tolerate anything less than total submission to its reckless and criminal foreign policy agenda.’
    • ‘No nation can prosper where corrupt practices are tolerated or in some aspects even encouraged.’
    • ‘We might tolerate or even allow prostitution but we do not encourage or commend it.’
    • ‘The ancient Romans tolerated all religions so long as everyone had some religion.’
    • ‘We need a mirror philosophy, if you will, one that reflects a state-endorsed ideology, tolerates no criticism, deals brutally with those who disagree and advances its cause with self-righteous violence.’
    allow, permit, authorize, sanction, condone, indulge, agree to, accede to, approve of
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Accept or endure (someone or something unpleasant or disliked) with forbearance.
      ‘how was it that she could tolerate such noise?’
      • ‘She tolerates the waiter, who refuses to leave her alone, and becomes defensive when he tells her that a lunch consisting of coffee and cigarettes is not very healthy.’
      • ‘If, like death and taxes, people tolerate you because they are stuck with you, you're a lost cause.’
      • ‘However, even those banished to the outer reaches of the town are not willing to tolerate bad conditions.’
      • ‘But that seems to be slowly changing, with most people tolerating you, if not welcoming you into their establishment.’
      • ‘As you are probably aware, Kyle is not someone who tolerates people yelling at him.’
      • ‘He tolerates her because it is his ambition to beat her at pool.’
      • ‘In Italy, for example, children are tolerated in restaurants even when they ought to be tucked up in bed.’
      • ‘Learning requires tolerating people who make mistakes.’
      • ‘He tolerated me and loved me when I was being moody and difficult.’
      • ‘Her mother barely tolerated her ex-husband, and he was way down on her list of favorite conversation topics.’
      • ‘Like the gallumphing horde of stray dogs which roam the cobbled streets, tourists are tolerated by the locals - up to a point.’
      • ‘It's just that you can't tolerate people who want to control or possess you.’
      • ‘Thank you to my colleagues who have supported and tolerated me.’
      • ‘Robinson had been brought up by a mother who tolerated men, while believing herself superior.’
      • ‘Mavericks and fools are often tolerated by parties as long as they're vote winners.’
      • ‘They know they are working for a company with standards; he doesn't tolerate people who don't perform well.’
      • ‘It doesn't help that Daisy barely tolerates him.’
      • ‘My brother, her own son, could hardly tolerate being in her presence.’
      • ‘Many a factory or office worker would not tolerate these conditions, calling on the union rep to take action.’
      • ‘You don't tolerate restrictions of your freedom and mobility, needing to be constantly on the move.’
      consume, take, stomach, digest, eat, receive, be subjected to, withstand subjection to, be treated with
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2 Be capable of continued subjection to (a drug, toxin, or environmental condition) without adverse reaction.
      ‘lichens grow in conditions that no other plants tolerate’
      • ‘Unfortunately it is poorly tolerated, and doubts have been raised about its effect on growth.’
      • ‘Horses tolerate these doses well with few cases of diarrhea or stomach irritation.’
      • ‘The drug is well tolerated and, in most cases, should be considered the drug of choice.’
      • ‘Antiviral therapy is not highly effective in transplant patients and poses additional problems for these individuals, who may have difficulty tolerating the potent drugs it involves.’
      • ‘Thoracic irradiation has been poorly tolerated among HIV-infected patients with lung cancer.’
      • ‘If the medication is well tolerated, it can be continued as long as it is effective.’
      • ‘The drug was well tolerated, particularly in the lower dosage group.’
      • ‘The peace lily is an indoor plant and will not tolerate frosty conditions.’
      • ‘Patients tolerating the drugs initially are much less likely to develop side effects afterward.’
      • ‘He has also been seen by an endocrinologist who confirms that, medically, he can tolerate the drug.’
      • ‘Like most trees, they prefer full sun but will tolerate light shade.’
      • ‘Apart from skin reactions at the vaccine site, intradermal administration of the vaccine was well tolerated.’
      • ‘The medication is well tolerated and has a favorable side effect profile.’
      • ‘Leafy vegetables tolerate some shade, but fruiting types such as squash need sun.’
      • ‘Adverse events seem to be dose related, supporting the practice of starting with a low dose and increasing slowly as the drug is tolerated.’
      • ‘In addition, this medication is well tolerated, with few adverse effects.’
      • ‘The number of adverse effects was comparable in the groups, and both drugs were well tolerated.’
      • ‘Although pin oaks grow best in full sun, they will tolerate light shade.’
      • ‘In general the antidepressants are safe and well tolerated medications.’
      • ‘Colchicine given orally or intravenously is an alternative but is poorly tolerated by elderly people.’
      consume, take, stomach, digest, eat, receive, be subjected to, withstand subjection to, be treated with
      View synonyms

Origin

Early 16th century (in the sense ‘endure pain’): from Latin tolerat- ‘endured’, from the verb tolerare.

Pronunciation

tolerate

/ˈtäləˌrāt//ˈtɑləˌreɪt/