easily crumbled or reduced to powder; crumbly: friable rock.


Origin of friable

1555–65; < Latin friābilis, equivalent to friā(re) to rub, crumble + -ābilis -able
Related formsfri·a·bil·i·ty, fri·a·ble·ness, nounun·fri·a·ble, adjectiveun·fri·a·ble·ness, noun
Can be confusedfriable fryable

Synonyms for friable Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for friable

Historical Examples of friable

British Dictionary definitions for friable



easily broken up; crumbly
Derived Formsfriability or friableness, noun

Word Origin for friable

C16: from Latin friābilis, from friāre to crumble; related to Latin fricāre to rub down
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 friable

1560s, from Middle French friable and directly from Latin friabilis "easily crumbled or broken," from friare "rub away, crumble into small pieces," related to fricare "to rub" (see friction). Related: Friability.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for friable




Readily crumbled; brittle.
Relating to a dry, brittle growth of bacteria.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.