faint

adjective
\ ˈfānt How to pronounce faint (audio) \

Definition of faint

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : lacking courage and spirit : cowardly faint of heart
2 : weak, dizzy, and likely to faint sick and faint from the pain— Jack London
3 : lacking strength or vigor : performed, offered, or accomplished weakly or languidly faint praise a faint smile on her lips
4 : producing a sensation of faintness : oppressive the faint atmosphere of a tropical port
5a : hardly perceptible : dim faint handwriting
b : vague sense 2a haven't the faintest idea

faint

verb
fainted; fainting; faints

Definition of faint (Entry 2 of 3)

intransitive verb

1 archaic : to lose courage or spirit
2 archaic : to become weak
3 : to lose consciousness because of a temporary decrease in the blood supply to the brain

faint

noun

Definition of faint (Entry 3 of 3)

: the physiological action of fainting also : the resulting condition : syncope sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from faint

Adjective

faintish \ ˈfān-​tish How to pronounce faintish (audio) \ adjective
faintishness noun
faintly adverb
faintness noun

Examples of faint in a Sentence

Adjective

We heard a faint noise. the faint glow of a distant light There was a faint smile on her lips. There's just a faint chance that the weather will improve by tomorrow. a faint reminder of their former greatness I'd better lie down; I feel faint. She felt faint from hunger.

Verb

He always faints at the sight of blood. She almost fainted from the pain. She suffers from fainting spells.

Noun

shocking news can cause a person to fall into a faint
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

At the very least, the Warriors won’t be absent championship spirit as long as Green dons their jersey, even if actual title hopes are faint without Durant and Thompson. Matt Schneidman, The Mercury News, "Draymond Green goes out in typical Draymond Green fashion," 14 June 2019 When David Freese stepped into the batter’s box to face Jon Lester in the fourth inning at Dodger Stadium on Thursday, the signs of life from the Dodgers’ offense were faint. Jorge Castillo, latimes.com, "Dodgers shake off offensive slumber to beat the Cubs," 13 June 2019 Handcuffed to a wheelchair in orange jail scrubs, the 72-year-old looked dazed and spoke in a faint voice to acknowledge he was represented by a public defender. Zoe Szathmary, Fox News, "Suspected Golden State Killer's ex-fiancee revealed as travel blogger," 29 Apr. 2018 Some viewers on Twitter suggested the drinking vessel was from Starbucks, given the faint resemblance of the company's logo, but that remains unclear. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "The Rogue Coffee Cup in Game of Thrones Has Been Edited Out," 7 May 2019 This year's rates are about one meteor per minute, which might come in the form of a faint streak or a bright fireball. Sarah Lewin, Space.com, "The 2018 Perseid Meteor Shower Promises Spectacular Views This Week," 6 Aug. 2018 Generally, this is a long process for an individual that started with a faint idea that gradually took hold as those risk factors mounted and as the capability came into their purview. Cindy Dampier, chicagotribune.com, "In the wake of Kate Spade's death, taking a different view on suicide," 8 June 2018 Even with our most powerful telescopes, the biggest rogue planets are nothing more than the faintest of dots. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "Our Galaxy Could Have 50 Billion Rogue Planets," 11 Mar. 2019 Warning: This is not for the squeamish or faint of heart. 1. Fox News, "Chef kitchen nightmares: True gory stories from restaurants," 18 Nov. 2015

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Barakat’s older sister, Dr. Suzanne Barakat, fainted. NBC News, "Man sentenced to three life terms without parole for killing three Muslims," 13 June 2019 Barakat’s older sister, Dr. Suzanne Barakat, fainted while watching the video. Time, "North Carolina Man Pleads Guilty to Killing 3 Muslim University Students," 12 June 2019 Former Swansea striker Bafetimbi Gomis fainted whilst playing for Galatasaray against Kasimpasa in the Turkish Super Liga after just six minutes. SI.com, "Ex-Swansea Striker Bafetimbi Gomis Collapses During Galatasaray Match But Carries on Playing," 19 Feb. 2018 Red Cross workers gave medical attention to some migrants who fainted in the heat. Fox News, "Honduran migrant caravan crosses Guatemala border, US-bound," 15 Oct. 2018 Red Cross workers gave medical attention to some migrants who fainted in the heat. Sonia Perez D., The Seattle Times, "Honduran migrant caravan crosses Guatemala border, US-bound," 15 Oct. 2018 Lauren O'Connell, a contestant on the current Survivor: Edge of Extinction series, fainted during a challenge. Blair Donovan, Country Living, "'Survivor' Sparks Controversy for the Show's Reaction to Lauren O'Connell's Scary Fall," 4 Apr. 2019 King County will pay $1 million to a former jail inmate who fainted and fell while in custody, suffering a spinal injury that went untreated for days and left him with permanent nerve damage. Heidi Groover, The Seattle Times, "King County to pay former jail inmate $1M for spinal-cord injury untreated for 10 days," 6 Oct. 2018 The museum’s first show, 1971’s Adrian Retrospective, actually was a show—a one-time runway presentation on moving, breathing bodies (today’s conservationists would faint dead at the thought). Laura Jacobs, WSJ, "‘Exhibitionism: 50 Years of The Museum at FIT’ Review: Fashion History Hits the Runway," 12 Feb. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Everyone ends up in the rain forest for a conclusion that is not for the faint of heart. Mary Ann Grossmann, Twin Cities, "A tale of love illustrated with lowercase letters is among this week’s new books," 16 June 2019 Like the Dickens Restoring something as complex as the boiler and running gear of a supersized vintage locomotive isn’t for the faint of heart. Tom Bentley, Popular Mechanics, "Why the Big Boy 4014 is Such a Badass Train," 13 June 2019 On a good day, the job of the MBTA’s social media team is not for the faint of heart. Christina Prignano, BostonGlobe.com, "St. Louis Metro ‘wins’ bet to take over MBTA Twitter account," 13 June 2019 As the name implies, Discovery's Deadliest Catch docuseries isn't for the faint of heart. Blair Donovan, Country Living, "'Deadliest Catch' Season 15 Premiere Pays Tribute to Fishermen Who Lost Their Lives," 14 Apr. 2019 Cyber dots are clearly not for the faint of heart, but Charli’s got the intrepid spirit necessary to pull them off. Vogue, "Kardashians, Who? Charli XCX Is Obsessed With Vintage Jean Paul Gaultier, Too," 8 Apr. 2019 Though front-of-center commenting gigs are considered cushier and more official, the truth is that sideline reporting is not for the faint of heart. Michelle Ruiz, Vogue, "Why Are Women Always on the Sidelines of Sports Reporting?," 18 Mar. 2019 Extremely Up Close Blackhead Removal Another pimple popping video that most definitely is not for the faint of heart. Andrea Navarro, Teen Vogue, "15 Grossly Satisfying Pimple Popping Videos We Can't Stop Watching," 14 Mar. 2019 These learned essays, heaving with historical and literary references, are not for the faint of heart. Laura Auricchio, WSJ, "‘The Republic of Letters’ Review: A Network of Open Minds," 25 Dec. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of faint

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1792, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for faint

Adjective, Verb, and Noun

Middle English faint, feint, from Anglo-French, from past participle of feindre, faindre to feign, lose heart — more at feign

Keep scrolling for more

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for faint

faint

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of faint

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: not clearly seen, heard, tasted, felt, etc.
: very slight or small
: weak and dizzy

faint

verb

English Language Learners Definition of faint (Entry 2 of 2)

: to suddenly become unconscious

faint

adjective
\ ˈfānt How to pronounce faint (audio) \
fainter; faintest

Kids Definition of faint

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : not clear or plain : dim faint handwriting
2 : weak or dizzy and likely to collapse I feel faint.
3 : lacking strength a faint attempt a faint breeze

Other Words from faint

faintly adverb
faintness noun

faint

verb
fainted; fainting

Kids Definition of faint (Entry 2 of 3)

: to suddenly lose consciousness

faint

noun

Kids Definition of faint (Entry 3 of 3)

: an act or condition of suddenly losing consciousness

faint

adjective
\ ˈfānt How to pronounce faint (audio) \

Medical Definition of faint

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: weak, dizzy, and likely to faint

Medical Definition of faint (Entry 2 of 3)

: to lose consciousness because of a temporary decrease in the blood supply to the brain

faint

noun

Medical Definition of faint (Entry 3 of 3)

: the physiological action of fainting also : the resulting condition : syncope

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on faint

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with faint

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for faint

Spanish Central: Translation of faint

Nglish: Translation of faint for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of faint for Arabic Speakers

Comments on faint

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

WORD OF THE DAY

showing courage and determination

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a closeup of a sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!