Thesaurus

failing

noun

Synonyms & Antonyms of failing

(Entry 1 of 3)

a defect in character
  • we could talk about your failings, but it would take all night

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failing

adjective

Synonyms of failing (Entry 2 of 3)

failing

verb
present participle of fail

Synonyms & Antonyms of failing (Entry 3 of 3)

1 to stop functioning
  • my car failed just as I was about to head to work

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3 to fall short in satisfying the expectation or hope of
  • although the minor-league franchise continues to fail local fans, hope springs eternal

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4 to lose bodily strength or vigor
  • ever since she reached the age of 90, Grandma has been noticeably failing

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5 to miss the opportunity or obligation
  • failed to mention that he was looking for new job

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See the Dictionary Definition 

Frequently Asked Questions About failing

How does the noun failing differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of failing are fault, foible, frailty, and vice. While all these words mean "an imperfection or weakness of character," failing suggests a minor shortcoming in character.

being late is a failing of mine

When might fault be a better fit than failing?

The synonyms fault and failing are sometimes interchangeable, but fault implies a failure, not necessarily culpable, to reach some standard of perfection in disposition, action, or habit.

a writer of many virtues and few faults

When is foible a more appropriate choice than failing?

While in some cases nearly identical to failing, foible applies to a harmless or endearing weakness or idiosyncrasy.

an eccentric's charming foibles

When could frailty be used to replace failing?

The words frailty and failing are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, frailty implies a general or chronic proneness to yield to temptation.

human frailties

When would vice be a good substitute for failing?

Although the words vice and failing have much in common, vice can be a general term for any imperfection or weakness, but it often suggests violation of a moral code or the giving of offense to the moral sensibilities of others.

compulsive gambling was his vice

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Time Traveler for failing

Time Traveler

The first known use of failing was in 1590

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Cite this Entry

“Failing.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/failing. Accessed 21 Sep. 2020.

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More from Merriam-Webster on failing

Dictionary: Definition of failing

Nglish: Translation of failing for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of failing for Arabic Speakers

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