American Dictionary of the English Language

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1. Passive power; the power of containing, or holding; extent of room or space; as the capacity of a vessel, or a cask.

2. The extent or comprehensiveness of the mind; the power of receiving ideas or knowledge.

Let instruction be adapted to the capacities of youth.

3. Active power; ability; applied to men or things; but less common, and correct.

The world does not include a cause endued with such capacities.

4. State; condition; character; profession; occupation. A man may act in the capacity of a mechanic, of a friend, of an attorney, or of a statesman. He may have a natural or a political capacity

5. Ability, in a moral or legal sense; qualification; legal power or right; as, a man or a corporation may have a capacity to give or receive and hold estate.

6. In geometry, the solid contents of a body.

7. In chimistry, that state, quality or constitution of bodies, by which they absorb and contain, or render latent, any fluid; as the capacity of water for caloric.