Definition of “allow” - English Dictionary

“allow” in English

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uk /əˈlaʊ/ us /əˈlaʊ/

allow verb (GIVE PERMISSION)

B1 [ T ] to give permission for someone to do something, or to not prevent something from happening:

[ + to infinitive ] Do you think Dad will allow you to go to Jamie's party?
You're not allowed to talk during the exam.
Her proposals would allow (= make it possible for) more people to stay in full-time education.
The loophole has allowed hundreds of drink-drivers to avoid prosecution.
The government has refused to allow foreign journalists into the area for several weeks.
Prisoners have been moved to allow the demolition of part of the prison.
Pets aren't allowed in this hotel.
[ + -ing verb ] Smoking is not allowed in this restaurant.
[ + two objects ] He didn't allow us enough time to finish the test.
Red Cross officials were allowed access to the prison for the first time a few days ago.
UK The referee decided to allow (= officially accept) the goal.
At the weekend I allow myself (= I give myself the special pleasure of having) a box of chocolates.
How much time do you allow yourself (= make available to yourself) to get ready in the morning?
allow me old-fashioned

a polite expression used when offering to help in some way:

You can't carry all those bags yourself - please, allow me.

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Phrasal verb(s)

(Definition of “allow” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

“allow” in American English

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allowverb [ T ]

us /əˈlɑʊ/

allow verb [ T ] (PERMIT)

to let someone do something or let something happen; permit:

You’re not allowed to talk during the exam.
Are you allowed in the building on weekends?
Video links allow rural schoolchildren to be taught by teachers hundreds of miles away.

allow verb [ T ] (MAKE AVAILABLE)

to make it possible for something to be done or to happen:

He didn’t allow enough time to finish the test.
Be sure to allow room in your bags for the souvenirs you’ll want to bring home.
adjective us /əˈlɑʊ·ə·bəl/

Our well water has nitrates above the allowable level.

Phrasal verb(s)

(Definition of “allow” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

“allow” in Business English

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allowverb [ T ]

uk /əˈlaʊ/ us

to make it possible for someone to do something, or to not prevent something from happening:

allow sb/sth to do sth The website allows consumers to compare the prices of all energy and telephone providers.
The extra compensation was allowed, overriding regulations that otherwise would not allow the payouts.
Typing in this code will allow access to the data stored on the hard drive.

to give enough time for something to happen:

Allow at least 14 days to receive your policy and cover confirmation.
allow sth for sth You will need to allow up to six weeks for delivery.

ACCOUNTING to take a cost or an amount off your income or profit before the tax owed is calculated:

The Australian Taxation Office allows tax deductions for voluntary donations to charity.

COMMERCE to take a certain amount of money from the price of something :

allow sb sth for sth A dealer will be able to tell you how much you would be allowed in part-exchange for your existing vehicle.

to accept or agree that something is true or correct:

An individual has three years to file a personal injury claim, although the court has the power to allow claims later.
allow that When I pressed her, she allowed that a mistake might have been made.

Phrasal verb(s)

(Definition of “allow” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

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Allow me to make some other points.
Allow me to correct the erroneous impression, which one or two speakers are clearly under, that it is already a fact of life.
The longer we allow the confusion to exist, the greater the delay in enabling society to benefit from its full potential.
If these countries are forced to allow 15-metre buses, they will need to install extra road signs everywhere around the country.
Allow me to anticipate these and state that politicians ought to listen to scientific assessments and conclusions and not try to make their own assessments of the scientific research material.
The government must also allow the courts to determine the outcome of any challenge to election results in particular constituencies, and must respect their decisions.
If we choose tight protection for our citizens we should not allow the exporting of more dangerous products which profit from the addiction of others.
Why are we unable or unwilling to allow safeguards for a minimum of national identity in the professional teams that represent clubs?
To top it all, we are in fact aware that a large number of them are harmful, and yet we still allow them to be used.
In this respect, it will sometimes be necessary to allow telecommunications to be intercepted when strictly essential to protect these values and in the interests of justice.