in·​fir·​mi·​ty | \ in-ˈfər-mə-tē How to pronounce infirmity (audio) \
plural infirmities

Definition of infirmity

1a : the quality or state of being infirm
b : the condition of being feeble : frailty
3 : a personal failing : foible one of the besetting infirmities of living creatures is egotism— A. J. Toynbee

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Examples of infirmity in a Sentence

In recent years she has had to reduce her schedule because of age and infirmity. the infirmities of old age
Recent Examples on the Web Constitutional experts say it was originally intended to cover physical and mental infirmity, not misconduct. Simeon Tegel, Washington Post, "Peru’s president faces impeachment vote amid lethal coronavirus outbreak," 17 Sep. 2020 After establishing this sociopolitical context, Harkup delves into chapter-by-chapter analysis of specific characters’ causes of death, including infirmity, murder, war, plague, poison, emotion and bear attack. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian Magazine, "Shakespearean Stabbings, How to Feed a Dictator and Other New Books to Read," 5 May 2020 The only judgment of Ozymandias comes through Rorschach, who, with his problematic politics and psychological infirmities, is himself a spoof of the righteous-hero trope. Maya Phillips, The New Yorker, "“Watchmen,” “The Boys,” and the False Hope That Superheroes Can Save Us," 17 Dec. 2019 Structural loneliness — especially chronic loneliness that is caused by poverty, infirmity, disability and illness — is not the same as existential loneliness, characterized by a yearning for others, or more typically a significant other. Fay Bound Alberti, Time, "Loneliness Is a Modern Invention. Understanding That History Can Help Us Get Through This Pandemic," 29 Apr. 2020 But anyone who wasn’t scanning for some indication of the infirmity that forced the postponement very likely wouldn’t have found it, as the singer was slinky, wiry, and fully engaged. Marc Hirsh,, "At Gillette, there’s no stopping the Rolling Stones," 8 July 2019 Navigating the complexities of the American health care system can be challenging, and those challenges are only compounded by factors such as limited income, a lack of reliable transportation, advanced age and various health infirmities. David Buice, Dallas News, "Baylor Scott & White works to serve high-risk patients and underserved communities," 27 June 2019 After his conviction, Killen persuaded a judge to grant him freedom pending his appeal, citing among other reasons infirmities that limited his mobility. Randall Kennedy, New York Times, "The Journalist and the Murderers," 10 Mar. 2020 An alternative disposition does not mean that there were any problems or infirmities with the case or the evidence. Katie Kilkenny, Billboard, "Chicago Prosecutor Says He Doesn't Believe Jussie Smollett Is Innocent," 27 Mar. 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for infirmity

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

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Statistics for infirmity

Last Updated

28 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Infirmity.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for infirmity


How to pronounce infirmity (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of infirmity

: the quality or state of being weak or ill especially because of old age
: a disease or illness that usually lasts for a long time


in·​fir·​mi·​ty | \ in-ˈfər-mə-tē How to pronounce infirmity (audio) \
plural infirmities

Kids Definition of infirmity

: the condition of being weak or frail (as from age or illness)


in·​fir·​mi·​ty | \ in-ˈfər-mət-ē How to pronounce infirmity (audio) \
plural infirmities

Medical Definition of infirmity

: the quality or state of being infirm especially : an unsound, unhealthy, or debilitated state

More from Merriam-Webster on infirmity

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for infirmity

Nglish: Translation of infirmity for Spanish Speakers

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