adjective \e-ˈfēt, i-\

: lacking strength, courage, or spirit

: resembling a woman

Full Definition of EFFETE

:  no longer fertile
a :  having lost character, vitality, or strength <the effete monarchies … of feudal Europe — G. M. Trevelyan>
b :  marked by weakness or decadence <the effete East>
c :  soft or delicate from or as if from a pampered existence <peddled … trendy tweeds to effete Easterners — William Helmer> <effete tenderfeet>; also :  characteristic of an effete person <a wool scarf … a bit effete on an outdoorsman — Nelson Bryant>
:  effeminate 1 <a good-humored, effete boy brought up by maiden aunts — Herman Wouk>
ef·fete·ly adverb
ef·fete·ness noun

Examples of EFFETE

  1. effete members of the aristocracy
  2. <the soft, effete society that marked the final years of the Roman empire>

Origin of EFFETE

Latin effetus, from ex- + fetus fruitful — more at feminine
First Known Use: 1660


Next Word in the Dictionary: efficacious
Previous Word in the Dictionary: effervescible
All Words Near: effete

Seen & Heard

What made you want to look up effete? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Get Our Free Apps
Voice Search, Favorites,
Word of the Day, and More
Join Us on FB & Twitter
Get the Word of the Day and More