- a person who is feeble-minded.
- a person who is foolish or senseless; dunderhead.
Origin of half-wit
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for half-wit
Naomi Watts plays Diana as a sweet-natured, wistful, half-wit.Princess Diana Was the Girlfriend From Hell. Why Is This Movie So Boring?
November 4, 2013
"For the family," was Cleena's watchword, and it had already become the half-wit's.Reels and Spindles
"No half-wit about you," admiringly quoth the carpenter's mate.Blackbeard: Buccaneer
Ralph D. Paine
Beside being a half-wit he had something the matter with his legs.
Allie Mulberry the half-wit was one of the highlights of life in the town.
For what the half-wit did was what he had seen these others do.The Broken Gate
Word Origin and History for half-wit
1670s, 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"]
Phrase out of half wit "half out of one's mind" was in Middle English (late 14c.). Half-witted "lacking common sense" is from 1640s.