friable

adjective
fri·a·ble | \ˈfrī-ə-bəl \

Definition of friable 

: easily crumbled or pulverized friable soil

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Other Words from friable

friability \ˌfrī-ə-ˈbi-lə-tē \ noun

Synonyms for friable

Synonyms

brittle, crisp, crispy, crumbly, flaky (also flakey), short

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Choose the Right Synonym for friable

fragile, frangible, brittle, crisp, friable mean breaking easily. fragile implies extreme delicacy of material or construction and need for careful handling. a fragile antique chair frangible implies susceptibility to being broken without implying weakness or delicacy. frangible stone used for paving brittle implies hardness together with lack of elasticity or flexibility or toughness. brittle bones crisp implies a firmness and brittleness desirable especially in some foods. crisp lettuce friable applies to substances that are easily crumbled or pulverized. friable soil

When Should You Use friable?

Friable entered into English in the mid-1500s, and was borrowed either from Middle French or directly from Latin friabilis. This Latin adjective comes from the verb "friare," which means "to crumble." "Friare" in turn is related to the verb "fricare" ("to rub"), the source of the English noun "friction." "Friable" is used to describe something that can be easily reduced to a powdered form. In contemporary usage, it is often found in the discussion of asbestos. Health concerns about asbestos primarily center around friable asbestos - that is, asbestos that is easily pulverized into tiny fibers which may remain suspended in the air and become a potential health risk to those who inhale them.

Examples of friable in a Sentence

sand dollars are friable, so handle them carefully

Recent Examples on the Web

Materials that contain asbestos, such as vinyl floor tiles, are non-friable. David Anderson, The Aegis, "Asbestos warning posted, as floor tiles are replaced in Aberdeen post office," 10 May 2018 In my brother's case, however, the tumor was infected with a secondary staph infection, causing it to become friable and throw off little blood clots to his extremities. Jenny Mollen, Marie Claire, "Actress and Author Jenny Mollen Opens Up About Her Family's Scary Health Crisis," 17 July 2017 In my brother's case, however, the tumor was infected with a secondary staph infection, causing it to become friable and throw off little blood clots to his extremities. Jenny Mollen, Marie Claire, "Actress and Author Jenny Mollen Opens Up About Her Family's Scary Health Crisis," 17 July 2017 Masonry » Masonry: polyurethane hardscape adhesive Masonry surfaces are often friable (prone to scaling). Popular Mechanics, "How to Glue Anything to Anything Else," 2 Mar. 2017 Masonry » Masonry: polyurethane hardscape adhesive Masonry surfaces are often friable (prone to scaling). Popular Mechanics, "How to Glue Anything to Anything Else," 2 Mar. 2017

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

1563, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for friable

Middle French or Latin; Middle French, from Latin friabilis, from friare to crumble — more at friction

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Dictionary Entries near friable

Freytag

FRG

Fri

friable

Fria, Cape

friand

friar

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Time Traveler for friable

The first known use of friable was in 1563

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More Definitions for friable

friable

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of friable

: easily broken into smaller pieces

friable

adjective
fri·a·ble | \ˈfrī-ə-bəl \

Medical Definition of friable 

: easily crumbled or pulverized friable carcinomatous tissue also : marked by erosion and bleeding a friable cervix with bleeding on contact — Pippa Oakeshott et al

Other Words from friable

friability \ˌfrī-ə-ˈbil-ət-ē \ noun plural -ties

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Comments on friable

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