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of, relating to, or capable of walking:
an ambulatory exploration of the countryside.
adapted for walking, as the limbs of many animals.
moving about or from place to place; not stationary:
an ambulatory tribe.
Also, ambulant. Medicine/Medical.

not confined to bed; able or strong enough to walk:
an ambulatory patient.
serving patients who are able to walk:
an ambulatory care center.

Law. not fixed; alterable or revocable:
ambulatory will.
Also called deambulatory. Architecture.

an aisle surrounding the end of the choir or chancel of a church.
the covered walk of a cloister.

Contemporary Examples

Piscitelli found out just how bad it had been when he counted the number of ambulatory survivors who came back with the dawn.
On Memorial Day, Remembering 15-Year-Old Marine PFC Dan Bullock Michael Daly May 27, 2012

If it’s dead, it’s undead, like the culture at large: ambulatory in the age of Twilight.
Must-Read Books by Will Hermes, Lydia Millet, and Stuart Nadler Nicholas Mancusi, Drew Toal, John Reed November 27, 2011

The firefighters did not want the ambulatory passengers to chance onto an electrified rail or encounter some other hazard.
Amazing Grace in the Bronx: Inside the Metro-North Train-Wreck Rescue Michael Daly December 1, 2013

Historical Examples

Dictator Nariño had broken completely with the ambulatory congress, and was sending his troops into the adjacent provinces.
The South American Republics, Part II (of 2) Thomas C. Dawson

He had met her by chance in the ambulatory on her way from Brother Bonaday’s rooms.
Brother Copas Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

Over the choir, consisting of one large bay, are intersecting ribs that appear to be posterior to those of the ambulatory.
How France Built Her Cathedrals Elizabeth Boyle O’Reilly

The poet is greater than man: he is nature on two legs,—ambulatory.
How Spring Came in New England Charles Dudley Warner

It is much broader; broader indeed than the ambulatory which leads to it, and is covered by barrel vaults.
Byzantine Churches in Constantinople Alexander Van Millingen

There is a central apse, an ambulatory, out of which radiate five chapels.
The Cathedrals of Great Britain P. H. Ditchfield

This arrangement enables us to enjoy the glazing of the ambulatory and the choir chapels from all parts of the building.
Stained Glass Tours in France Charles Hitchcock Sherrill

of, relating to, or designed for walking
changing position; not fixed
Also ambulant. able to walk
(law) (esp of a will) capable of being altered or revoked
noun (pl) -ries

an aisle running around the east end of a church, esp one that passes behind the sanctuary
a place for walking, such as an aisle or a cloister


“pertaining to walking;” also “shifting, not permanent,” 1620s, from Latin ambulatorius “of or pertaining to a walker; movable,” from ambulator, agent noun from past participle stem of ambulare “to walk” (see amble). Middle English had ambulary “movable” (mid-15c.).

from Medieval Latin ambulatorium, from Latin ambulatorius “movable,” from ambulare (see amble).

ambulatory am·bu·la·to·ry (ām’byə-lə-tôr’ē)

Of, relating to, or adapted for walking.

Capable of walking; not bedridden.

Moving about.


Read Also:

  • Ambulatory care

    noun care given at a hospital to non-resident patients, including minor surgery and outpatient treatment noun any non-emergency or outpatient medical care at a clinic, doctor’s office, or hospital Examples A general checkup is considered ambulatory care. Word Origin from ambulatory ‘able to walk’ Usage Note medicine

  • Ambulatory surgery

    ambulatory surgery ambulatory surgery n. Surgery performed on a person who is admitted to and discharged from a hospital on the same day.

  • Ambulette

    a specially equipped motor vehicle for transporting people who are convalescing or have mobility issues. Contemporary Examples He had worked as a cab and ambulette driver since setting foot in the country and was suddenly out of work. I’m an Illegal Immigrant at Harvard Anonymous November 26, 2010

  • Ambulophobia

    noun a fear of walking Word Origin ambulo- ‘walking’

Disclaimer: Ambulatory definition / meaning should not be considered complete, up to date, and is not intended to be used in place of a visit, consultation, or advice of a legal, medical, or any other professional. All content on this website is for informational purposes only.