Why was clemency trending last week?


[dih-fish-uh nt] /dɪˈfɪʃ ənt/
lacking some element or characteristic; defective:
deficient in taste.
insufficient; inadequate:
deficient knowledge.
a person who is deficient, especially one who is mentally defective.
Origin of deficient
1575-85; < Latin dēficient- (stem of dēficiēns, present participle of dēficere to fail, run short, lack, weaken), equivalent to dē- de- + fic-, combining form of facere to make, do1 + thematic -i- + -ent- -ent
Related forms
deficiently, adverb
nondeficient, adjective
nondeficiently, adverb
predeficient, adjective
predeficiently, adverb
undeficient, adjective
undeficiently, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for deficient
  • The two deficient enzymes mentioned in the article are products of genes being read and proteins being synthesized.
  • Being different does not mean one is deficient.
  • Others blame deficient demand for the country's stubbornly high unemployment.
  • One of every four bridges nationwide is either structurally deficient or functionally obsolete.
  • It's true early jets were deficient in firepower.
  • When you act assertive you're deemed deficient in social skills, according to an earlier paper by the same researchers.
  • More than a quarter of the nation's bridges are obsolete or deficient.
  • My knowledge of goat noises and exclamations is clearly deficient.
  • Although the candidate's record was appallingly deficient, the chairman wrote a glowing letter of support.
  • Sounds to me like he might be severely lacking in social skills and deficient in picking up on social cues.
British Dictionary definitions for deficient


lacking some essential; incomplete; defective
inadequate in quantity or supply; insufficient
Derived Forms
deficiently, adverb
Word Origin
C16: from Latin dēficiēns lacking, from dēficere to fall short; see defect
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for deficient

1580s, from Latin deficientem (nominative deficiens), present participle of deficere "to desert, revolt, fail," from de- "down, away" (see de-) + facere "to do, perform" (see factitious).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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deficient in Medicine

deficient de·fi·cient (dĭ-fĭsh'ənt)

  1. Lacking an essential quality or element.

  2. Inadequate in amount or degree; insufficient.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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