To describe by enumerating the characteristics or qualities of; characterize. To make competent or eligible for an office, position, or task. To declare competent or capable; certify. To make legally capable; license. To modify, limit, or restrict, as by giving exceptions. To make less harsh or severe; moderate. See Synonyms at moderate. Grammar To modify the meaning of (a noun, for example). To be or become qualified. To reach the later stages of a selection process or contest by competing successfully in earlier rounds.