somewhat old; near old age: a resort for elderly people.
of or pertaining to persons in later life.

1605–15; elder1 + -ly

elderliness, noun
nonelderly, noun
unelderly, adjective

1. See old.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
elderly (ˈɛldəlɪ)
a.  quite old; past middle age
 b.  (as collective noun; preceded by the): the elderly Related: geriatric
Related: geriatric
usage  Referring to any group using the formula the elderly, the disabled is nowadays felt to be inappropriate because it glosses over people's individuality and perpetuates stereotypes. It is preferable to use phrases such as disabled people and so forth. Many people also prefer to talk about older rather than elderly people for similar reasons

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

1610s, from elder + -ly (1).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Britannica


in human beings, the final stage of the normal life span. Definitions of old age are not consistent from the standpoints of biology, demography (conditions of mortality and morbidity), employment and retirement, and sociology. For statistical and public administrative purposes, however, old age is frequently defined as 60 or 65 years of age or older

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
Someday, in a house next door, a robot may be playing a game of cribbage with
  an elderly widow.
Elderly visitors who drink the spring's sulfur-smelling water don't turn into
Some elderly males do become completely white, though many retain small flecks
  of dusky plumage.
If possible, talk to elderly residents who might have interesting stories to
  share about the changes they've seen in the area.
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