feeble

adjective
fee·​ble | \ ˈfē-bəl How to pronounce feeble (audio) \
feebler\ ˈfē-​b(ə-​)lər How to pronounce feeble (audio) \; feeblest\ ˈfē-​b(ə-​)ləst How to pronounce feeble (audio) \

Definition of feeble

1a : markedly lacking in strength a feeble old man
b : indicating weakness taking only feeble steps
2a : deficient in qualities or resources that indicate vigor, authority, force, or efficiency a feeble argument cities are growing uncreative and feeble— Jane Jacobs
b : inadequate, inferior a feeble excuse

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Other Words from feeble

feebleness \ ˈfē-​bəl-​nəs How to pronounce feeble (audio) \ noun
feebly \ ˈfē-​blē How to pronounce feeble (audio) \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for feeble

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 feeble in a Sentence

She's still feeble from her long illness. We heard a feeble cry for help. Business is suffering because of the feeble economy. He made a feeble attempt to explain his behavior. He offered a feeble excuse for his behavior. “Dislike” is too feeble a word for how she feels about him.
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Recent Examples on the Web His feeble stab at extending an olive branch doesn't work. Nick Schager, EW.com, 11 Oct. 2021 In his 2020 campaign, Democratic rivals cast his views on achieving social and economic progress as outdated; in the presidency, Republicans and conservative media have portrayed him as doddering and feeble. John Harwood, CNN, 26 Sep. 2021 Biden’s feeble strike at nameless ISIS-K planners, on the other hand, has an air of Don Quixote tilting at ISIS-K windmills. A. J. Caschetta, National Review, 21 Sep. 2021 Stocks closed lower on Wall Street Friday, marking a feeble ending to an up-and-down week of trading. Elaine Kurtenbach, ajc, 20 Sep. 2021 That’s not at all like going after an animal that might be a hatchling or perhaps already injured and possibly feeble. Lance Eliot, Forbes, 10 Sep. 2021 The Spartans beat Northwestern last season when the Wildcats were strong and Michigan State was feeble. Chris Solari, Detroit Free Press, 2 Sep. 2021 There is certainly some resentment here that the US withdrawal has been so quick and that its leverage over the Taliban in the Doha talks has been so feeble. Melanie Zanona, CNN, 13 Aug. 2021 The rapid loss of pressure as one is reeled from the deep can inflate that bladder to the point that some fish pop to the surface after mustering a relatively feeble fight for such a large fish. Dan Egan, jsonline.com, 2 Sep. 2021

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

12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for feeble

Middle English feble, from Anglo-French, from Latin flebilis lamentable, wretched, from flēre to weep — more at bleat

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Time Traveler for feeble

Time Traveler

The first known use of feeble was in the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near feeble

fee bill

feeble

feebleminded

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Statistics for feeble

Last Updated

15 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Feeble.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/feeble. Accessed 27 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for feeble

feeble

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of feeble

: very weak
: not good enough : not successful or effective

feeble

adjective
fee·​ble | \ ˈfē-bəl How to pronounce feeble (audio) \
feebler\ -​blər \; feeblest\ -​bləst \

Kids Definition of feeble

1 : lacking in strength or endurance a feeble old dog
2 : not effective or sufficient a feeble attempt Her feeble cry could not be heard.

Other Words from feeble

feebleness \ -​bəl-​nəs \ noun
feebly \ -​blē \ adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on feeble

Nglish: Translation of feeble for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of feeble for Arabic Speakers

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