cripple

[krip-uhl]
noun
1.
a.
Offensive. a term used to refer to a person who is partially or totally unable to use one or more limbs.
b.
an animal that is similarly disabled; a lame animal.
c.
a person who is disabled or impaired in any way: a mental cripple.
2.
anything that is impaired or flawed.
3.
a wounded animal, especially one shot by a hunter.
4.
Carpentry. any structural member shorter than usual, as a stud beneath a windowsill.
5.
Delaware Valley. a swampy, densely overgrown tract of land.
verb (used with object), crippled, crippling.
6.
to make a cripple of; lame.
7.
to disable; impair; weaken.
adjective
8.
Carpentry. jack1 ( def 28 ).

Origin:
before 950; Middle English cripel, Old English crypel; akin to creep

crippler, noun
cripplingly, adverb
uncrippled, adjective


When referring to a person, the use of cripple as a noun or verb (or verbal adjective crippled) is not common and is perceived as insulting. The alternative terms handicapped and the handicapped are still in use but are not the usual terms of choice. The most common and acceptable terms are disabled, and when referring to a group, the disabled or people with disabilities. And disabled is a more comprehensive word that includes many different kinds of impairments, whether temporary or permanent. In contrast, cripple and crippled describe usually permanent impairments that involve the limbs, making it difficult or impossible for the person to move or walk. See also retarded.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
cripple (ˈkrɪpəl)
 
n
1.  offensive a person who is lame
2.  offensive a person who is or seems disabled or deficient in some way: a mental cripple
3.  dialect (US) a dense thicket, usually in marshy land
 
vb
4.  (tr) to make a cripple of; disable
 
[Old English crypel; related to crēopan to creep, Old Frisian kreppel a cripple, Middle Low German kröpel]
 
'crippler
 
n

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

cripple
O.E. crypel, related to cryppan "to crook, bend," from P.Gmc. *krupilaz, and/or related to O.E. creopan "to creep."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

cripple crip·ple (krĭp'əl)
n.
One that is partially disabled or unable to use a limb or limbs. v. crip·pled, crip·pling, crip·ples
To cause to lose the use of a limb or limbs.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Example sentences
Because they're crippled, or too old and enfeebled to pursue deer, boars and
  other wildlife.
The corn-spirit was probably thus represented as lame because he had been
  crippled by the cutting of the corn.
Students are crippled because unnecessary requirements decrease the students'
  likelihood to graduate in a timely manner.
One of his sons, however, was thrown out of a window and crippled for life.
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