definitions
  • synonyms

deaf-mute

[ def-myoot ]
/ ˈdɛfˈmyut /
Offensive.
|

adjective

unable to hear and speak.

noun

a person who is unable to hear and speak, especially one in whom inability to speak is due to congenital or early deafness.

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Nearby words

deaf aid, deaf as a post, deaf without speech, deaf-and-dumb, deaf-blind, deaf-mute, deafblind, deafen, deafening, deafeningly, deafferentation

Origin of deaf-mute

1830–40; translation of French sourd-muet
Related formsdeaf-mute·ness, deaf-mut·ism, noun

Usage note

See dumb.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for deaf-mutism

British Dictionary definitions for deaf-mutism

deaf-mute


noun

a person who is unable to hear or speakSee also mute 1 (def. 7), mutism (def. 2b)

adjective

unable to hear or speak
Derived Formsdeaf-muteness or deaf-mutism, noun

Word Origin for deaf-mute

C19: translation of French sourd-muet

usage

Using this word to refer to people without speech is considered outdated and offensive, and should be avoided. The phrase profoundly deaf is a suitable alternative in many contexts
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

Medicine definitions for deaf-mutism

deaf-mute

[ dĕfmyōōt′ ]

n.

A person who can neither hear nor speak. No longer in technical use.

adj.

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