I recently ran into a word that I hadn't encountered before in my life in this context:

"Well, thanks a lot [BlackVegetable] both for your quick reply and disponibility."

(It's in a comment on Stack Overflow.)

Intrigued, I performed a quick Google search on the word "Disponibility" which led me to the Wiktionary entry stating:

Noun: availability

What on earth? I thought I would have encountered this in a thesaurus or some other context for such a common word by now. When is this word (supposed to be) used, and is it an exact synonym?

  • 1
    – Gnawme
    Commented Jan 24, 2014 at 16:39
  • 1
    If you'd asked me, without this context, I would have said it was a coinage for "lack of responsibility". Of course, "dismember" is not the opposite of "remember", either :)
    – JeffSahol
    Commented Mar 13, 2014 at 19:14

6 Answers 6


My guess is that the person who used it is a native French speaker and translated disponibilité with the closest sounding cognate. (Could be similar in Spanish, I don't know.) I say this because disponibilité is extremely common in French where we would use availability (e.g. "pas de disponibilité" for an apartment or job that is taken).

Interestingly, the more common way this Latin root "-pon-" is borrowed is "pose," and indeed we do borrow this French word with "pose," e.g. in the expression "at your disposal" = "available to you." Of course, if he had thanked you a lot for your disposal, that might have been even more confusing...

  • 5
    Disponible is indeed also Spanish word for availability or vacancy (of a facility). In English, I have only encountered it in academic or technical writing, especially as a term of art in macroeconomics and in Christian theology.
    – choster
    Commented Jan 24, 2014 at 16:17
  • 1
    I can confirm that indeed French speaking people use it where English natives would use availability instead. Today a French couple asked for logement on couchsurfing.com and used the term disponibility in that context.
    – Abel
    Commented Jan 18, 2017 at 21:22

I recognised it, as did @hunter, as the French for 'available', but was a bit surprised to find that 'disponible' is actually recognised by the OED as an English word. (Goodness knows how it is pronounced; not the French way, that's for sure)

disponible, adj. (and n.) View as: Outline |Full entryQuotations: Show all |Hide all Pronunciation: ( /dɪˈspəʊnɪb(ə)l/ ; freq. as French /dispɔnibl/ ) Etymology: < Latin dispōnĕre to dispone v. + -ble suffix; Compare French disponible. Thesaurus »

Capable of being disponed or assigned. Also absol. as n.

1965 Punch 24 Mar. 447/3 One's picture of the higher civil servant—adroit, informed, disponible, never in the way or out of it.


As a native french speaker, I can confirm you that the guy who told you "Thank you for your disponibility" wanted to tell you "Thank you for your availability!". This mistake is often made by french people. As hunter said, "disponibilité (french word)" => "availability".


I have Spanish as mother tongue and I have to confess that this word tends to leak out from my mouth/fingers unconsciously every now and then. The conventional translation from Spanish to English of "disponible" is "available". According to what Jan has found in the OED, should I use "available" or "disponible"? Well based on my experience, when I make use of common Latin/Spanish words that also exist in English it turn to be that, quite often, they are not that well known by native English speakers. So, I "alter" now my formal text so it will show "availability" instead of "disponibility".


I have seen the word used in English though it is not used much these days. As I understood how it used to be used, it conveyed a greater meaning than just being available. It added the sense that you were willing available as opposed to being available, but not with your whole heart.

For example, "Yes I am available for the task, but I am not really excited or eager about it." vs. "Yes, I am available and I would love to do it." It implied a willing disposition in addition to availability.

  • 3
    Hello, Drew, and thank you. We really want answers that are backed up by authoritative references on ELU (or any other StackExchange site). Withoput such, this would make a good comment (though the few relevant examples of 'disponible' I've been able to find using a Google search seem to use the word for both volitional agents and inanimate agents). Commented Jun 8, 2015 at 8:06

this word comes from latim.

The word is mustly used in Portuguese, where is used in few difrent contexts.


"Obrigado pela sua disponibilidade" - "Thank you for your disponibility (availability)".


"Esta casa esta disponivel" - "This house is available"

There is more context we use it on, like: "Esta pessoa esta disponivel" - This person is available"

Spanish and French also use it was mentioned befor, but not much was we in Portugal.

But in english this word doesn't exist, so someone have problably translated it from his root language.

  • 2
    Please check your spelling. All browsers nowadays are equipped with spell checkers, you can use either download an American or British one, there is no excuse for such bad spelling.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Nov 3, 2014 at 11:25
  • Beside the spelling, you should do some research before spreading totally random information. Disponível (Português), Disponible (Spanish and French), Disponibile (Italian) are used in exactly the same way and context. Commented Jun 20, 2020 at 11:29

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.