imbecile

noun im·be·cile \ ˈim-bə-səl , -ˌsil \
1 : fool, idiot
2 dated, now offensive : a person affected with moderate mental retardation

imbecilic

play \ˌim-bə-ˈsi-lik\ or imbecile adjective

Examples of imbecile in a Sentence

  1. He drank too much and started acting like a complete imbecile.

  2. only an imbecile would leave their car unlocked, with the keys in the ignition, and then be surprised when the vehicle was stolen

Recent Examples of imbecile from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of imbecile

French imbécile, noun, from adjective, weak, weak-minded, from Latin imbecillus

First Known Use: 1802

in the meaning defined at sense 2


IMBECILE Defined for English Language Learners

imbecile

  • : a very stupid person : an idiot or fool


IMBECILE Defined for Kids

imbecile

noun im·be·cile \ ˈim-bə-səl \
: idiot, fool

Medical Dictionary

imbecile

noun im·be·cile \ ˈim-bə-səl, -ˌsil \
dated, now offensive
: a person affected with moderate mental retardation

imbecile

or imbecilic play \ˌim-bə-ˈsil-ik\ adjective, dated, now offensive

imbecility

\ˌim-bə-ˈsil-ət-ē\ noun, plural -ties dated, now offensive

Law Dictionary

imbecile

noun im·be·cile \ ˈim-bə-sil, -ˌsīl \
: an intellectually disabled person; especially : a person with a severe intellectual disability used formerly — see also idiot


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