an act or instance of failing; failure: His failing is due to general incompetence.
a defect or fault; shortcoming; weakness: His lack of knowledge is a grave failing.
in the absence or default of: Failing payment, we shall sue.
- fail·ing·ly, adverb
- fail·ing·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use failing in a sentence
Sensing trouble, when Johnson assumed the role, many onlookers used the phrase “glass cliff” to indicate the belief that Johnson was taking on leadership of a failing company and thus doomed to fail herself.Magic Leap’s Peggy Johnson: Becoming CEO of a pivoting business doesn’t mean jumping off the ‘glass cliff’ | lbelanger225 | October 1, 2020 | Fortune
The state of global bodies that, despite their many failings, have been instrumental in building and enforcing international laws is no better.
In his ruling, Judge Tan Ikram said Uber, which claims to have over 45,000 drivers in the city, was now “fit and proper” to hold a London private-hire vehicle operator’s license “despite their historical failings.”Uber shares soar as London court gives license go-ahead | David Meyer | September 28, 2020 | Fortune
The company’s failings reflect a broader struggle within the industry to commercialize a technology with so much promise.Magic Leap tried to create an alternate reality. Its founder was already in one | Verne Kopytoff | September 26, 2020 | Fortune
The National Security Council in this early period also struggled, without someone with a clinical epidemiology or global health security background empowered to run the response or challenge health officials — a huge failing, this official added.Ten days: After an early coronavirus warning, Trump is distracted as he downplays threat | Ashley Parker, Josh Dawsey, Yasmeen Abutaleb | September 17, 2020 | Washington Post
He beat his illness twice, wrote about his battles with the disease, and continued broadcasting even as his health was failing.Remembering ESPN’s Sly, Cocky, and Cool Anchor Stuart Scott | Stereo Williams | January 4, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
Annie Lee Cooper, well played by Winfrey, is shown trying but failing to register to vote.Dr. King Goes to Hollywood: The Flawed History of ‘Selma’ | Gary May | January 2, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
But failing that, he advised pro-immigration reform Republican candidates such as former Gov. Jeb Bush to just skip the state.Can This Republican Bring the GOP Back to Its Senses on Immigration? | Tim Mak | December 29, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
They recorded 10,549 graves on or near the railway in 144 cemeteries, failing to locate only 52 graves.
So by failing, I go audition for Any Given Sunday [and] things turn out right.
HE ordered a lunch which he thought the girl would like, with wine to revive the faculties that he knew must be failing.Rosemary in Search of a Father | C. N. Williamson
The foster-father, who was an American resident in Hong-Kong, found his eyesight gradually failing him.The Philippine Islands | John Foreman
Before Ulm he nearly ruined Napoleon's combination by failing to get in contact with the enemy.Napoleon's Marshals | R. P. Dunn-Pattison
Norman went slowly down, with failing knees, hardly able to conquer the shudder that came over him, as he passed those rooms.The Daisy Chain | Charlotte Yonge
The country abounded in excellent native fruits, and the mandioc furnished never-failing stores of bread.Journal of a Voyage to Brazil | Maria Graham
British Dictionary definitions for failing
a weak point; flaw
(used to express a condition) in default of: failing a solution this afternoon, the problem will have to wait until Monday
- failingly, adverb
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