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[in-fur-mi-tee] /ɪnˈfɜr mɪ ti/
noun, plural infirmities for 1, 3.
a physical weakness or ailment:
the infirmities of age.
quality or state of being infirm; lack of strength.
a moral weakness or failing.
Origin of infirmity
1325-75; Middle English infirmite < Latin infirmitās. See infirm, -ity
Related forms
superinfirmity, noun, plural superinfirmities.
3. flaw, defect, fault. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for infirmity
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • A man I have ever thought wore the motley rather from excess, than infirmity, of wit.

    The Armourer's Prentices Charlotte M. Yonge
  • Discontent is the want of self-reliance: it is infirmity of will.

    Essays, First Series Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • It is inexpressible how much this infirmity adds to a sense of shame, and a general feeling of deterioration.

  • The Princess was not sure of “infirmity,” but it sounded well.

    The Very Small Person Annie Hamilton Donnell
  • That thou must be the first to teach this teaching—how could this great fate not be thy greatest danger and infirmity!

    Thus Spake Zarathustra Friedrich Nietzsche
  • Yet that is the infirmity of the seneschals, who do not know their sovereign when he appears.

    Essays, Second Series Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • It is an infirmity in one of the eyes, making the two unequal in power, that makes men squint.

    The Guardian Angel Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.
  • Just pretend not to notice, as he would pretend not to notice any infirmity or vanity of yours.

    In a Little Town Rupert Hughes
  • After two years of infirmity, Pasteur at length began to feel the recovery of health.

    Louis Pasteur Ren Vallery-Radot
British Dictionary definitions for infirmity


noun (pl) -ties
the state or quality of being infirm
physical weakness or debility; frailty
a moral flaw or failing
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 infirmity

late 14c., "disease, sickness; lack of capability, weakness," from Latin infirmitatem (nominative infirmitas) "want of strength, weakness, feebleness," noun of quality from infirmus (see infirm). Cf. Middle French infirmité, Old French enfermete.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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infirmity in Medicine

infirmity in·fir·mi·ty (ĭn-fûr'mĭ-tē)

  1. A bodily ailment or weakness, especially one brought on by old age.

  2. A condition or disease producing weakness.

  3. A failing or defect in a person's character.

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