Simple Definition of malinger
: to pretend to be sick or injured in order to avoid doing work
Examples of malinger in a sentence
His boss suspected him of malingering because of his frequent absences from work.
Did You Know?
Do you know someone who always seems to develop an ailment when there's work to be done? Someone who merits an Academy Award for his or her superb simulation of symptoms? Then you know a malingerer. The verb malinger comes from the French word malingre, meaning "sickly," and one who malingers feigns illness. In its earliest uses in the 19th century, malinger usually referred to a soldier or sailor pretending to be sick or insane to shirk duty. Later, psychologists began using malingering as a clinical term to describe the feigning of illness in avoidance of a duty or for personal gain. Today, malinger is used in just about any context in which someone fakes sickness or injury to get out of an undesirable task.
Origin of malinger
French malingre sickly
First Known Use: 1820
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