-ible/able

Many words end in -ible or -able. Sometimes it is difficult to remember which spelling to use.

The -ible ending is for words of Latin origin. There are about 180 words ending in -ible. No new words are being created with -ible endings.

The most common -ible endings
accessible
admissible
audible
collapsible
combustible
compatible
comprehensible
contemptible
credible
defensible
destructible
digestible
divisible
edible
fallible
flexible
gullible
horrible
illegible
implausible
inaccessible
incontrovertible
incredible
indefensible
indelible
inedible
insensible
intelligible
invincible
invisible
illegible
irresistible
irreversible
ostensible
permissible
plausible
possible
responsible
reversible
sensible
susceptible
suggestible
tangible
terrible
visible

The -able ending is for:

Rule of thumb
This rule can help you decide the correct spelling. It works most (but not all!) of the time. Remember, if you are not sure about a word, it is probably best to use a dictionary. Here is the rule: