1. an act or instance of failing; failure: His failing is due to general incompetence.
  2. a defect or fault; shortcoming; weakness: His lack of knowledge is a grave failing.
  1. in the absence or default of: Failing payment, we shall sue.

Origin of failing

Middle English word dating back to 1250–1300; see origin at fail, -ing1
Related formsfail·ing·ly, adverbfail·ing·ness, noun

Synonyms for failing

2. See fault. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for failingly


  1. a weak point; flaw
  1. (used to express a condition) in default offailing a solution this afternoon, the problem will have to wait until Monday
Derived Formsfailingly, 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

Word Origin and History for failingly



"defect, fault," 1580s, verbal noun from fail (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper