Dictionary.com

frail

1
[ freyl ]
/ freɪl /
Save This Word!
See synonyms for: frail / frailness on Thesaurus.com

adjective, frail·er, frail·est.
having delicate health; not robust; weak: My grandfather is rather frail now.
easily broken or destroyed; fragile.
morally weak; easily tempted.
noun
Older Slang: Sometimes Offensive. a term used to refer to a girl or woman.
QUIZ
ARE YOU A TRUE BLUE CHAMPION OF THESE "BLUE" SYNONYMS?
We could talk until we're blue in the face about this quiz on words for the color "blue," but we think you should take the quiz and find out if you're a whiz at these colorful terms.
Question 1 of 8
Which of the following words describes “sky blue”?
Meet Grammar CoachWrite or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar helpImprove Your Writing
Meet Grammar CoachImprove Your Writing
Write or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar help

Origin of frail

1
First recorded in 1300–50; Middle English frail(e), frel(e), from Old French, from Latin fragilis fragile

synonym study for frail

1, 2. Frail, brittle, fragile imply a delicacy or weakness of substance or construction. Frail applies particularly to health and immaterial things: a frail constitution; frail hopes. Brittle implies a hard material that snaps or breaks to pieces easily: brittle as glass. Fragile implies that the object must be handled carefully to avoid breakage or damage: fragile bric-a-brac.

usage note for frail

This term is sometimes perceived as insulting or condescending when used to refer to a woman, since it reinforces the stereotype of a weak female.

OTHER WORDS FROM frail

frailly, adverbfrailness, noun

Other definitions for frail (2 of 2)

frail2
[ freyl ]
/ freɪl /

noun
a flexible basket made of rushes, used especially for dried fruits, as dates, figs, or raisins.
a certain quantity of raisins, about 75 pounds (34 kilograms), contained in such a basket.

Origin of frail

2
First recorded 1300–50; Middle English frayel, fraelle, from Old French frayel; further origin unknown
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

How to use frail in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for frail (1 of 2)

frail1
/ (freɪl) /

adjective
physically weak and delicate
fragilea frail craft
easily corrupted or tempted

Derived forms of frail

frailly, adverbfrailness, noun

Word Origin for frail

C13: from Old French frele, from Latin fragilis, fragile

British Dictionary definitions for frail (2 of 2)

frail2
/ (freɪl) /

noun
a rush basket for figs or raisins
a quantity of raisins or figs equal to between 50 and 75 pounds

Word Origin for frail

C13: from Old French fraiel, of uncertain origin
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
FEEDBACK