weak

adjective
\ ˈwēk How to pronounce weak (audio) \

Definition of weak

1 : lacking strength: such as
a : deficient in physical vigor : feeble, debilitated
b : not able to sustain or exert much weight, pressure, or strain
c : not able to resist external force or withstand attack
d : easily upset or nauseated a weak stomach
2a : mentally or intellectually deficient
b : not firmly decided : vacillating
c : resulting from or indicating lack of judgment or discernment
d : not able to withstand temptation or persuasion the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak
3 : not factually grounded or logically presented a weak argument
4a : not able to function properly weak eyes
b(1) : lacking skill or proficiency tutoring for weaker students
(2) : indicative of a lack of skill or aptitude history was my weakest subject
c : wanting in vigor of expression or effect a weak translation of the poem
5a : deficient in the usual or required ingredients : dilute weak coffee
b : lacking normal intensity or potency a weak radio signal a weak strain of virus
6a : not having or exerting authority or political power weak government
7a : of, relating to, or constituting a verb or verb conjugation that in English forms the past tense and past participle by adding the suffix -ed or -d or -t
b of a noun or adjective declension in Germanic languages : retaining a lesser number of distinctions in case, number and gender
8a : bearing the minimal degree of stress occurring in the language a weak syllable
b : having little or no stress and obscured vowel sound 'd in he'd is the weak form of would
9 : tending toward a lower price or value a weak market a weak dollar
10 : ionizing only slightly in solution weak acids and bases

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Other Words from weak

weakly adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for weak

weak, feeble, frail, fragile, infirm, decrepit mean not strong enough to endure strain, pressure, or strenuous effort. weak applies to deficiency or inferiority in strength or power of any sort. felt weak after the surgery feeble suggests extreme weakness inviting pity or contempt. a feeble attempt to walk frail implies delicacy and slightness of constitution or structure. a frail teenager unable to enjoy sports fragile suggests frailty and brittleness unable to resist rough usage. a reclusive poet too fragile for the rigors of this world infirm suggests instability, unsoundness, and insecurity due to old age or crippling illness. infirm residents requiring constant care decrepit implies being worn-out or broken-down from long use or old age. the dowager's decrepit retainers

Examples of weak in a Sentence

He has a weak throwing arm. The illness left her too weak to stand up. The child was born with weak lungs. The batter hit a weak ground ball. She uttered her reply in a weak voice. The door's hinge is weak.
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Recent Examples on the Web Officials believe the woman -- who was weak and had lost weight when found Monday -- chose to stay in the Diamond Fork area over the last few months, the Utah County Sheriff's Office said. Emily Shapiro, ABC News, "Woman missing for months found alive; foraged for grass, moss to survive: Utah officials," 4 May 2021 Not for the faint of heart nor the weak of stomach, Ousie’s oyster martini is one part Bombay Sapphire, one part vodka and one part large raw oyster. Joanna O'leary, Chron, "Houston's best spring gin cocktails," 23 Apr. 2021 Spelling, like believable performances, is for the weak. Bill Goodykoontz, The Arizona Republic, "Welcome to 'Mortal Kombat.' It's violent, stupid and there's more where that came from," 22 Apr. 2021 During the afternoon, however, expect some pop-up showers associated with a weak cold front coming through. Washington Post, "D.C.-area forecast: Cooler this week with a chance of showers on most days," 12 Apr. 2021 Stabler is actually married — his wife, Kathy, a beleaguered but supportive high-school sweetheart — and comes to his job with old-school morals and white-knight moralism: defender of the weak with a notoriously short fuse. Carmen Maria Machado, Los Angeles Times, "Commentary: ‘Law & Order’ is lost without Stabler and Benson. Here’s why their pairing works," 8 Apr. 2021 Henningsen’s rehabilitation timeline wasn't for the weak. Jeff Potrykus, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Matt Henningsen, fully recovered from torn bicep, is back to lead the Badgers' defensive line unit in 2021," 5 Apr. 2021 Marine clouds are expected to stream in later in the afternoon and throughout the evening ahead of a new weak front moving south from the Gulf of Alaska. oregonlive, "Portland metro Monday weather: Chilly start, then sunny; high 60," 5 Apr. 2021 Herd or community immunity occurs when enough people are protected from a virus to form a population barrier around the very young and old, the weak and the sick. Anne Saker, The Enquirer, "COVID-19: When will Ohio gain protective herd immunity from vaccines? Doctors can't be sure," 2 Apr. 2021

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for weak

Middle English weike, from Old Norse veikr; akin to Old English wīcan to yield, Greek eikein to give way, Sanskrit vijate he speeds, flees

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Time Traveler for weak

Time Traveler

The first known use of weak was in the 13th century

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Statistics for weak

Last Updated

8 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Weak.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/weak. Accessed 16 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for weak

weak

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of weak

: having little physical power or ability : not strong
: having little power or force
: likely to break or stop working properly : not able to handle weight, pressure, or strain

weak

adjective
\ ˈwēk How to pronounce weak (audio) \
weaker; weakest

Kids Definition of weak

1 : lacking strength of body, mind, or spirit a weak smile a weak patient
2 : not able to stand much strain or force a weak rope
3 : easily overcome a weak argument
4 : not able to function well a weak heart
5 : not rich in some usual or important element weak tea
6 : lacking experience or skill He's a good reader, but is weak in math.
7 : not loud or forceful a weak voice
8 : relating to or being the lightest of three levels of stress in pronunciation

Other Words from weak

weakly adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for weak

weak, feeble, and frail mean not strong enough to stand pressure or hard effort. weak can be used of either a temporary or permanent loss of strength or power. I felt weak after the operation. I have weak eyes. feeble implies very great and pitiful weakness. A feeble dog wandered in the streets. frail can be used of a person who since birth has had a delicate body. Being a frail child I was always getting sick.

More from Merriam-Webster on weak

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for weak

Nglish: Translation of weak for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of weak for Arabic Speakers

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