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 (fôr′mĭ-də-bəl, fôr-mĭd′ə-)
1. Arousing fear, dread, or alarm: the formidable prospect of major surgery.
2. Inspiring awe, admiration, or wonder: "A woman of formidable intelligence and tenacity, [she] prides herself on being independent-minded" (Nan Levinson).
3. Difficult to undertake, surmount, or defeat: a formidable challenge; a formidable opponent.

[Middle English, from Old French, from Latin formīdābilis, from formīdāre, to fear, from formīdō, fear.]

for′mi·da·bil′i·ty, for′mi·da·ble·ness n.
for′mi·da·bly adv.
Usage Note: Traditionally formidable has been pronounced with stress on the first syllable, but recently the pronunciation with stress on the second syllable, which is a common variant in British English, has seen increasing use in American English. However, the traditional pronunciation is still preferred by a large majority of the Usage Panel. In our 2008 survey, 73 percent favored the pronunciation with stress on the first syllable, and 27 percent favored the other pronunciation. Both pronunciations are acceptable, however.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.formidability - impressive difficultyformidability - impressive difficulty    
difficultness, difficulty - the quality of being difficult; "they agreed about the difficulty of the climb"
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in classic literature ?
Imagine, if you can, a bald-faced hornet of your earthly experience grown to the size of a prize Hereford bull, and you will have some faint conception of the ferocious appearance and awesome formidability of the winged monster that bore down upon me.
"Laila Robins [who plays Katarina] is a great embodiment of both the danger and the specter and the formidability," Bokenkamp added.
The formidability of the opposition group to the Floirendos was seen during the birthday celebration of the former Speaker over a week ago.
Speaking earlier, a former governor of Osun State and coordinator of the Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP), expressed the hope that ADC would form the next government in the state judging by the formidability of the party and the quality of the candidates fielded.
(121) John Paul Wilson et al., Racial Bias in Judgments of Physical Size and Formidability: From Size to Threat, 113 J.
To the contrary, PML (N) is increasingly finding itself encumbered by ever cropping up serious challenges; infighting from within, defections, declining perception about its formidability and refusal of its nominees to contest election, impending court's verdict against Nawaz Sharif and uncertainty about his return to Pakistan and spearhead the election campaign, his conflicting narrative and ever increasing NAB cases especially against Shahbaz Sharif who is also its newly appointed President and finding the seat too hot to handle because of lack real authority as virtually it lies with Nawaz Sharif.
With his physical formidability, Ramos Otero projected confidence in public settings, even sometimes recklessness.
Spiritual Formidability versus Physical Formidability
PAF will continue to build a stronger edifice of operational formidability on the foundations laid by Asghar Khan.
The PAF today, and foreseeable future will continue to build stronger edifice of operational formidability on the foundations laid by AM Asghar Khan with steel and mortar and blood, sweat and tears of the pioneering cavalcades, who joined the saga of courage, passion for fulfilling the mission resonating to this day ordained by the Quaid-e-Azam' 'The PAF to be second to none.' He stood apart in his unmatched achievements which are things beyond the Guinness Book of Records.
Its ambitious geographic scope, financial backing believed to be somewhere in the range of $ 1 trillion to approaching $4 trillion over time, and China's dogged efforts to frame a narrative of open borders and open trade in a connected world--at a moment when parts of the West have turned inward--has created an aura of formidability for many.