half wit

half-wit

[half-wit, hahf-]
noun
1.
a person who is feeble-minded.
2.
a person who is foolish or senseless; dunderhead.

Origin:
1670–80


2. blockhead, dolt, fool, nitwit, dope, dummy, dimwit.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

half-wit
1678, originally "a would-be wit whose abilities are mediocre;" sense of "simpleton" (one lacking all his wits) is first attested 1755.
"Half-wits are fleas; so little and so light,
We scarce could know they live, but that they bite."
[Dryden, "All for Love"]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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