noun \ˈflt, in poetry also ˈft\

: a bad quality or part of someone's character : a weakness in character

: a problem or bad part that prevents something from being perfect : a flaw or defect

: responsibility for a problem, mistake, bad situation, etc.

Full Definition of FAULT

obsolete :  lack
a :  weakness, failing; especially :  a moral weakness less serious than a vice
b :  a physical or intellectual imperfection or impairment :  defect
c :  an error especially in service in a net or racket game
a :  misdemeanor
b :  mistake
:  responsibility for wrongdoing or failure <the accident was the driver's fault>
:  a fracture in the crust of a planet (as the earth) or moon accompanied by a displacement of one side of the fracture with respect to the other usually in a direction parallel to the fracture
at fault
:  unable to find the scent and continue chase
:  open to blame :  responsible <you were really at fault>
to a fault
:  to an excessive degree <precise to a fault>

Examples of FAULT

  1. Lack of courage is his worst fault.
  2. If the book has a fault, it's that it's too long.
  3. It's your own fault you missed that bus.
  4. Through no fault of his own, he won't be able to attend the meeting.
  5. She committed too many faults to win the match.

Illustration of FAULT

Origin of FAULT

Middle English faute, falte, from Anglo-French, from Vulgar Latin *fallita, from feminine of fallitus, past participle of Latin fallere to deceive, disappoint
First Known Use: 13th century

Synonym Discussion of FAULT

fault, failing, frailty, foible, vice mean an imperfection or weakness of character. fault implies a failure, not necessarily culpable, to reach some standard of perfection in disposition, action, or habit <a writer of many virtues and few faults>. failing suggests a minor shortcoming in character <being late is a failing of mine>. frailty implies a general or chronic proneness to yield to temptation <human frailties>. foible applies to a harmless or endearing weakness or idiosyncrasy <an eccentric's charming foibles>. vice can be a general term for any imperfection or weakness, but it often suggests violation of a moral code or the giving of offense to the moral sensibilities of others <compulsive gambling was his vice>.

Rhymes with FAULT



: to criticize (something)

: to blame or criticize (someone)

Full Definition of FAULT

intransitive verb
:  to commit a fault :  err
:  to fracture so as to produce a geologic fault
transitive verb
:  to find a fault in <easy to praise this book and to fault it — H. G. Roepke>
:  to produce a geologic fault in
:  blame, censure <can't fault them for not coming>

Examples of FAULT

  1. The truck driver was faulted for the accident.
  2. Many have faulted her for not acting sooner.
  3. I can't fault him for trying to protect his family.

First Known Use of FAULT

15th century


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

In geology, a fracture in the rocks of the Earth's crust, where compressional or tensional forces cause the rocks on the opposite sides of the fracture to be displaced relative to each other. Faults range in length from a few inches to hundreds of miles, and displacement may also range from less than an inch to hundreds of miles along the fracture surface (the fault plane). Most, if not all, earthquakes are caused by rapid movement along faults. Faults are common throughout the world. A well-known example is the San Andreas Fault near the western coast of the U.S. The total movement along this fault during the last few million years appears to have been several miles.


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