Why was clemency trending last week?


[week-nis] /ˈwik nɪs/
the state or quality of being weak; lack of strength, firmness, vigor, or the like; feebleness.
an inadequate or defective quality, as in a person's character; slight fault or defect:
to show great sympathy for human weaknesses.
a self-indulgent liking or special fondness, as for a particular thing:
I've always had a weakness for the opera.
an object of special desire; something very difficult to resist:
Chocolates were her weakness.
Origin of weakness
1250-1300; Middle English weikenes. See weak, -ness
Related forms
nonweakness, noun
1. fragility. 2. flaw. See fault. 3. penchant, passion, hunger, appetite.
1. strength. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for weaknesses
  • Baker's research could point to ways to postpone widespread resistance by taking advantage of those weaknesses.
  • Though a compelling story, one of the film's weaknesses was its moderate approach to the problem.
  • The students must recognize that each submarine has its strengths and weaknesses.
  • They had to list and consider their team's strengths and weaknesses, as well as the outside opportunities and threats.
  • Rapidly sinking ground under a levee could cause structural weaknesses in the levee system, he explains.
  • Use the prompts below to guide a discussion about the strengths and weaknesses of using stationary cameras to study wildlife.
  • We discussed our priorities today, along with our perceived strengths and weaknesses.
  • He watches them carefully, knows their strengths, their weaknesses.
  • He's a good scientist, one who's earned kudos for his work probing the strengths and weaknesses of crustaceans and mollusks.
  • Even his little weaknesses and touches of vanity, recorded with exquisite humour are the defects of his qualities.
British Dictionary definitions for weaknesses


the state or quality of being weak
a deficiency or failing, as in a person's character
a self-indulgent fondness or liking: a weakness for chocolates
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 weaknesses



c.1300, "quality of being weak," from weak + -ness. Meaning "a disadvantage, vulnerability" is from 1590s. That of "self-indulgent fondness" is from 1712; meaning "thing for which one has an indulgent fondness" is from 1822.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Idioms and Phrases with weaknesses


The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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