frail·​ty | \ ˈfrāl-tē How to pronounce frailty (audio) \
plural frailties

Definition of frailty

1 : the quality or state of being frail the frailty of her health the frailty and disability in the elderly
2 : a fault due to weakness especially of moral character Satire … often employs irony and sarcasm to denounce the frailties and faults of mankind.— Harry Shaw

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Synonyms & Antonyms for frailty


demerit, dereliction, failing, fault, foible, shortcoming, sin, vice, want, weakness


merit, virtue

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Choose the Right Synonym for frailty

fault, failing, frailty, foible, vice mean an imperfection or weakness of character. fault implies a failure, not necessarily culpable, to reach some standard of perfection in disposition, action, or habit. a writer of many virtues and few faults failing suggests a minor shortcoming in character. being late is a failing of mine frailty implies a general or chronic proneness to yield to temptation. human frailties foible applies to a harmless or endearing weakness or idiosyncrasy. an eccentric's charming foibles vice can be a general term for any imperfection or weakness, but it often suggests violation of a moral code or the giving of offense to the moral sensibilities of others. compulsive gambling was his vice

Examples of frailty in a Sentence

the frailty of her voice We can no longer be surprised by the frailties of our political leaders.

Recent Examples on the Web

To dismiss this output because of flawed behavior and human frailty is cultural suicide. Marilynne Robinson, Harper's magazine, "Letters," 10 Apr. 2019 The mental and physical frailties that batter many people in their 70s seem to have left Mahathir alone. Washington Post, "Is 92 too old to lead? Malaysia’s Mahathir doesn’t think so," 11 May 2018 Haughty, seething with resentment, her memory clouded by age, her will to dominance undiminished by frailty, Jackson's A is every inch an embittered queen. Charles Mcnulty,, "My disastrous tea with Glenda Jackson," 26 Apr. 2018 My mother’s primary problems, old age and frailty, are particularly tough. Stacey Burling,, "How to know when it's time for hospice," 22 June 2018 Changes in gait and movement may flag frailty issues. Sumathi Reddy, WSJ, "A Tech Test to Keep Seniors in Their Homes Longer," 25 July 2018 Networks became an attractive option for creators a few years ago, when YouTubers were concerned about the frailty of Google’s AdSense system. Julia Alexander, The Verge, "YouTube creators blindsided by major network’s collapse," 5 Dec. 2018 Croatia was less blunt instrument and more about slow strangulation, as it limited service to Messi, exposed the frailty around him then went for the kill. Brian Straus,, "Argentina Has Plenty of Blame to Go Around as Its World Cup Spirals Out of Control," 21 June 2018 How to fix my parents, their increasing frailty and pain. Jill Gleeson, Woman's Day, "I Hate Yoga—But That Didn't Stop Me from Attending a Yoga Retreat in the Galapagos Islands," 4 Apr. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'frailty.' 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 frailty

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for frailty

Middle English frelete, freelte, borrowed from Anglo-French freleté, going back to Latin fragilitāt-, fragilitās, from fragilis "liable to break, weak, fragile" + -itāt-, -itās -ity

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Statistics for frailty

Last Updated

17 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for frailty

The first known use of frailty was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for frailty



English Language Learners Definition of frailty

: physical weakness : the quality or state of being frail
: weakness of character that causes a person to do things that are morally wrong


frail·​ty | \ ˈfrāl-tē How to pronounce frailty (audio) \
plural frailties

Kids Definition of frailty

1 : the quality or state of being weak the old man's frailty
2 : a weakness of character human frailty

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More from Merriam-Webster on frailty

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for frailty

Spanish Central: Translation of frailty

Nglish: Translation of frailty for Spanish Speakers

Comments on frailty

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


to take the place or position of

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