fee·​ble | \ ˈfē-bəl How to pronounce feeble (audio) \
feebler\ ˈfē-​b(ə-​)lər How to pronounce feeble (audio) \; feeblest\ ˈfē-​b(ə-​)ləst How to pronounce feeble (audio) \

Definition of feeble

1a : markedly lacking in strength a feeble old man
b : indicating weakness taking only feeble steps
2a : deficient in qualities or resources that indicate vigor, authority, force, or efficiency a feeble argument cities are growing uncreative and feeble— Jane Jacobs
b : inadequate, inferior a feeble excuse

Other Words from feeble

feebleness \ ˈfē-​bəl-​nəs How to pronounce feeble (audio) \ noun
feebly \ ˈfē-​blē How to pronounce feeble (audio) \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for feeble

weak, feeble, frail, fragile, infirm, decrepit mean not strong enough to endure strain, pressure, or strenuous effort. weak applies to deficiency or inferiority in strength or power of any sort. felt weak after the surgery feeble suggests extreme weakness inviting pity or contempt. a feeble attempt to walk frail implies delicacy and slightness of constitution or structure. a frail teenager unable to enjoy sports fragile suggests frailty and brittleness unable to resist rough usage. a reclusive poet too fragile for the rigors of this world infirm suggests instability, unsoundness, and insecurity due to old age or crippling illness. infirm residents requiring constant care decrepit implies being worn-out or broken-down from long use or old age. the dowager's decrepit retainers

Examples of feeble in a Sentence

She's still feeble from her long illness. We heard a feeble cry for help. Business is suffering because of the feeble economy. He made a feeble attempt to explain his behavior. He offered a feeble excuse for his behavior. “Dislike” is too feeble a word for how she feels about him. See More
Recent Examples on the Web These are major decisions for Key as England desperately eye a turnaround in what has been a rather feeble recent Test chapter. Tristan Lavalette, Forbes, 24 Apr. 2022 There is, the wandering plot notwithstanding, plenty of reason to relish the antic tone, the way the aimless banter and the flashes of wit manage to instill life into otherwise feeble exchanges. Dorothy Rabinowitz, WSJ, 14 Apr. 2022 Ukraine inflicted a stunning defeat of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s feeble attempt to capture the capital Kyiv in the war’s opening round. Daniel L. Davis, CNN, 14 Apr. 2022 But still Qwenlin Ferguson, who goes by the nickname Q, met up with friends at the Delhi Skate Plaza to practice skateboarding techniques like backside feeble grinds and backside board slides. Sharon Coolidge, The Enquirer, 29 Mar. 2022 In a rather feeble comedy segment filmed at the Academy Museum, Sykes acknowledged that a Black director has never won an Oscar. Richard Brody, The New Yorker, 28 Mar. 2022 Maria, meanwhile, seems to genuinely care about the wellbeing of others, especially the feeble and senile Kente. Jordan Mintzer, The Hollywood Reporter, 17 Mar. 2022 When the war dragged on, Russian industry was too feeble to fully resupply the military and inflation surged. Peter Landers And Alastair Gale, WSJ, 19 Mar. 2022 That is a rather feeble argument and there are many variations of the Trolley Problem, including the incorporation of probabilities rather than absolute certainties. Lance Eliot, Forbes, 8 Sep. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of feeble

12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for feeble

Middle English feble, from Anglo-French, from Latin flebilis lamentable, wretched, from flēre to weep — more at bleat

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Time Traveler for feeble

Time Traveler

The first known use of feeble was in the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near feeble

fee bill



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Last Updated

12 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Feeble.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/feeble. Accessed 23 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for feeble


fee·​ble | \ ˈfē-bəl How to pronounce feeble (audio) \
feebler\ -​blər \; feeblest\ -​bləst \

Kids Definition of feeble

1 : lacking in strength or endurance a feeble old dog
2 : not effective or sufficient a feeble attempt Her feeble cry could not be heard.

Other Words from feeble

feebleness \ -​bəl-​nəs \ noun
feebly \ -​blē \ adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on feeble

Nglish: Translation of feeble for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of feeble for Arabic Speakers


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