valetudinarian

noun
val·​e·​tu·​di·​nar·​i·​an | \ ˌva-lə-ˌtü-də-ˈner-ē-ən How to pronounce valetudinarian (audio) , -ˌtyü- \

Definition of valetudinarian

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person of a weak or sickly constitution especially : one whose chief concern is his or her ill health

valetudinarian

adjective

Definition of valetudinarian (Entry 2 of 2)

: of, relating to, or characteristic of a valetudinarian : sickly, weak

Did You Know?

Noun

Oddly enough, "valetudinarian," a word for someone who is sickly (or at least thinks he or she is) comes from "valēre," a Latin word that means "to be strong" or "to be well." Most of the English offspring of "valēre" imply having some kind of strength or force-consider, for instance, "valiant," "prevail," "valor," and "value." But the Latin valēre also gave rise to "valetudo." In Latin, "valetudo" refers to one's state of health (whether good or bad), but by the time that root had given rise to "valetudinarian" in the early 1700s, English-speaking pessimists had given it a decidedly sickly spin.

First Known Use of valetudinarian

Noun

1684, in the meaning defined above

Adjective

1713, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for valetudinarian

Noun

valetudinary entry 1 + -an entry 1

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The first known use of valetudinarian was in 1684

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Cite this Entry

“Valetudinarian.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/valetudinarian. Accessed 19 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for valetudinarian

valetudinarian

noun
val·​e·​tu·​di·​nar·​i·​an | \ ˌval-ə-ˌt(y)üd-ᵊn-ˈer-ē-ən How to pronounce valetudinarian (audio) \

Medical Definition of valetudinarian

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person of a weak or sickly constitution especially : one whose chief concern is his or her ill health

valetudinarian

adjective

Medical Definition of valetudinarian (Entry 2 of 2)

: of, relating to, or being a valetudinarian : sickly

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