deficient

adjective
de·​fi·​cient | \ di-ˈfi-shənt How to pronounce deficient (audio) \

Definition of deficient

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : lacking in some necessary quality or element deficient in judgment bones deficient in calcium
2 : not up to a normal standard or complement (see complement entry 1 sense 1b(1)) : defective deficient strength … rusted and aging pipes … abetted by deficient maintenance and sabotage.— Adam Nossiter

deficient

noun

Definition of deficient (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person or thing that is deficient a mental deficient

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Other Words from deficient

Adjective

deficiently adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for deficient

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of deficient in a Sentence

Adjective Several bridges in the city are structurally deficient. a diet deficient in calcium can lead to weak bones
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective West has been ousted from the ballot in several other states because of deficient paperwork. Laura Vozzella, Washington Post, "Kanye West appeals decision to remove him from Virginia ballot," 9 Sep. 2020 Scott said the area has a history of vacant, structurally deficient commercial properties that can breed criminal activity and lead to a lower quality of life for neighbors. Rachel Herzog, Arkansas Online, "Little Rock mayor unveils plan for Asher Avenue area," 3 Sep. 2020 The other lines of evidence that Marks had mentioned at the seminar on Aug. 1 were also deficient. Hilda Bastian, Wired, "The FDA's Approach to Covid-19 Is a Bloody Mess," 25 Aug. 2020 The Minnesota Court of Appeals, in the first appeal, sent the issue back to the PUC, saying the environmental impact statement for the project was deficient. Mike Hughlett, Star Tribune, "Minnesota Department of Commerce again appeals approval of Enbridge pipeline," 18 Aug. 2020 From the Justice Department’s standpoint, moreover, a deficient allocution can mean that all bets are off. Andrew C. Mccarthy, National Review, "Will Clinesmith Plead Guilty?," 18 Aug. 2020 The city of San Diego is moving forward with plans for a more than 10-acre community park near the park-deficient communities of Oak Park, Redwood Village, El Cerrito and City Heights. San Diego Union-Tribune, "San Diego community that wanted a park but got homeless storage center may get its wish," 14 Aug. 2020 The current crossing carries about 70,000 vehicles daily and has been deemed structurally deficient for years. Washington Post, "D.C. marks construction milestone on new Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge," 13 Aug. 2020 Department’s chief information officer quits as a department audit finds the agency lacks a current strategic plan and has a deficient supervisory structure. oregonlive, "Oregon employment department computers timeline," 5 Aug. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun But rising home prices are bailing out large numbers of the equity deficient: their number is down by more than 1.2 million in the last 12 months. Kenneth R. Harney, miamiherald, "Which U.S. neighborhood has homeowners with the most equity? Answer may surprise you," 22 Aug. 2017

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

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First Known Use of deficient

Adjective

1581, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1906, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for deficient

Adjective

borrowed from Latin dēficient-, dēficiens, present participle of dēficere "to leave without enough, let down, be lacking, run short, fail," from dē- de- + facere "to make, bring about, perform, do" — more at fact

Noun

derivative of deficient entry 1

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Time Traveler for deficient

Time Traveler

The first known use of deficient was in 1581

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Statistics for deficient

Last Updated

15 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Deficient.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/deficient. Accessed 18 Sep. 2020.

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More Definitions for deficient

deficient

adjective
How to pronounce deficient (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of deficient

: not having enough of something that is important or necessary
: not good enough : not as good as others

deficient

adjective
de·​fi·​cient | \ di-ˈfi-shənt How to pronounce deficient (audio) \

Kids Definition of deficient

: lacking something necessary for completeness or health Her diet is deficient in proteins.

deficient

adjective
de·​fi·​cient | \ di-ˈfish-ənt How to pronounce deficient (audio) \

Medical Definition of deficient

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : lacking in some necessary quality or element a deficient diet
2 : not up to a normal standard or complement deficient strength
3 : having, relating to, or characterized by a genetic deletion

deficient

noun

Medical Definition of deficient (Entry 2 of 2)

: one that is deficient a mental deficient

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Comments on deficient

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