cripple

noun
crip·ple | \ ˈkri-pəl \

Definition of cripple 

(Entry 1 of 3)

1a sometimes offensive : a lame or partly disabled person or animal

b : one that is disabled or deficient in a specified manner a social cripple

2 : something flawed or imperfect

cripple

adjective

Definition of cripple (Entry 2 of 3)

: being lame, flawed, or imperfect

cripple

verb
crippled; crippling\ˈkri-p(ə-)liŋ \

Definition of cripple (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to deprive of the use of a limb and especially a leg the accident left him crippled

2 : to deprive of capability for service or of strength, efficiency, or wholeness an economy crippled by inflation

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Other words from cripple

Verb

crippler \ˈkri-p(ə-)lər \ noun
cripplingly \ˈkri-p(ə-)liŋ-lē \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for cripple

Verb

maim, cripple, mutilate, batter, mangle mean to injure so severely as to cause lasting damage. maim implies the loss or injury of a bodily member through violence. maimed by a shark cripple implies the loss or serious impairment of an arm or leg. crippled for life in an accident mutilate implies the cutting off or removal of an essential part of a person or thing thereby impairing its completeness, beauty, or function. a tree mutilated by inept pruning batter implies a series of blows that bruise deeply, deform, or mutilate. an old ship battered by fierce storms mangle implies a tearing or crushing that leaves deep wounds. a soldier's leg mangled by shrapnel

weaken, enfeeble, debilitate, undermine, sap, cripple, disable mean to lose or cause to lose strength or vigor. weaken may imply loss of physical strength, health, soundness, or stability or of quality, intensity, or effective power. a disease that weakens the body's defenses enfeeble implies a condition of marked weakness and helplessness. enfeebled by starvation debilitate suggests a less marked or more temporary impairment of strength or vitality. the debilitating effects of surgery undermine and sap suggest a weakening by something working surreptitiously and insidiously. a poor diet undermines your health drugs had sapped his ability to think cripple implies causing a serious loss of functioning power through damaging or removing an essential part or element. crippled by arthritis disable suggests bringing about impairment or limitation in a physical or mental ability. disabled by an injury sustained at work

Examples of cripple in a Sentence

Noun

He returned from war a cripple.

Verb

Higher taxes could cripple small businesses. an economy crippled by inflation
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

So a future reconciliation bill would not only cripple Obamacare and strip millions of Americans of health coverage obtained via the exchanges, but also kill the Medicaid expansion and throw millions more out of coverage. Charles P. Pierce, Esquire, "If Trump Wins, Paul Ryan's Budget Plan Will Destroy 'Ordinary Americans'," 7 Oct. 2016

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Now, this is a move that would literally cripple Russia's fragile economy. Fox News, "Steve Bannon on NATO: Trump is saying 'no more games'," 12 July 2018 Myanmar had been ruled since 1962 by successive military regimes that drove the country into political isolation, crippled the economy, oppressed ethnic minorities, and repeatedly put down popular uprisings with deadly force. Timothy Mclaughlin, WIRED, "How Facebook’s Rise Fueled Chaos and Confusion in Myanmar," 6 July 2018 Worse, the company is basically crippling its hotspot feature for all customers on the $45 unlimited plan. Chris Welch, The Verge, "Comcast’s Xfinity Mobile announces new restrictions on video quality and hotspot speeds," 2 July 2018 The Texas Medical Center was crippled during the storm and much damage was done to that area. Craig Hlavaty, Houston Chronicle, "Remembering when Tropical Storm Allison flooded Houston," 11 June 2018 Spieth tried to remain upbeat afterward, insisting that some of his misses were by miniscule margins, crippled by gusts of wind. Eamon Lynch, USA TODAY, "Jordan Spieth has disappointing 75 in first round at The Players Championship," 10 May 2018 Trump has considered ousting the Justice Department official overseeing the probe, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein - a move that some Trump associates hope would cripple the inquiry. Washington Post, BostonGlobe.com, "Poll suggests majority of Americans back Mueller’s investigation," 14 Apr. 2018 Steve Bannon is trying to push the administration toward a plan that would cripple the Mueller probe, writes the Washington Post. NBC News, "First Read's Morning Clips: The GOP retirements are adding up," 12 Apr. 2018 The difficulties UConn has had getting fans to games has translated into a drop in home-game revenue, which can be crippling for an athletic department at a university that is facing financial hurdles. Kelli Stacy, courant.com, "Historically Low Attendance At UConn Men's Basketball, Football Games As Programs Try To Rebuild," 10 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cripple.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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History and Etymology for cripple

Noun

Middle English cripel, from Old English crypel; akin to Old English crēopan to creep — more at creep

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Dictionary Entries near cripple

criophore

crip

cripes

cripple

Cripple Creek

crippledom

cripplement

Statistics for cripple

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More Definitions for cripple

cripple

verb

English Language Learners Definition of cripple

: to cause (a person or animal) to be unable to move or walk normally

: to make (something) unable to work normally : to cause great damage to (something)

cripple

noun
crip·ple | \ ˈkri-pəl \

Kids Definition of cripple

 (Entry 1 of 2)

sometimes offensive

: a disabled person who is unable to fully use one or both of his or her arms or legs

Hint: In the past, this word was not considered offensive. In recent years, however, some people have come to find the word hurtful, and you may offend someone by using it.

cripple

verb
crippled; crippling

Kids Definition of cripple (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to cause to lose the use of one or more arms or legs The accident crippled the boy.

2 : to make useless or powerless … fear can so cripple a person that he cannot think or act. —Jean Craighead George, Julie of the Wolves

cripple

noun
crip·ple | \ ˈkrip-əl \

Medical Definition of cripple 

(Entry 1 of 3)

sometimes offensive

: an individual having a physical disability and especially a physically impaired leg or foot

cripple

adjective

Medical Definition of cripple (Entry 2 of 3)

: being a cripple : lame

cripple

transitive verb
crippled; crippling\-(ə)-liŋ \

Medical Definition of cripple (Entry 3 of 3)

: to deprive of the use of a limb and especially a leg crippled by arthritis

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Comments on cripple

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