[mawr-uh-buhnd, mor-]


in a dying state; near death.
on the verge of extinction or termination.
not progressing or advancing; stagnant: a moribund political party.

Origin of moribund

1715–25; < Latin moribundus dying, equivalent to mori- (stem of morī to die) + -bundus adj. suffix
Related formsmor·i·bun·di·ty, nounmor·i·bund·ly, adverbun·mor·i·bund, adjectiveun·mor·i·bund·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for moribund

Contemporary Examples of moribund

Historical Examples of moribund

  • More than the population of the moribund city, at least as Harkaman remembered it.

    Space Viking

    Henry Beam Piper

  • "You can tell my country, sir, that I died willingly," panted the moribund.

    The Dop Doctor

    Clotilde Inez Mary Graves

  • I saw for myself the return of life to a body that was moribund.

    The Blue Germ

    Martin Swayne

  • Together the two works are an epitome of modern and moribund Iran.

  • Surely it was time to infuse new blood into the veins of the moribund art.

    The Reef

    Edith Wharton

British Dictionary definitions for moribund



near death
stagnant; without force or vitality
Derived Formsmoribundity, nounmoribundly, adverb

Word Origin for moribund

C18: from Latin, from morī to die
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 moribund

1721, "about to die," from Middle French moribund (16c.), from Latin moribundus "dying, at the point of death," from mori "to die" (see mortal (adj.)). Figurative sense of "near an end" is from 1837. Related: Moribundity.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for moribund




At the point of death; dying.
Related formsmor′i•bundi•ty (-bŭndĭ-tē) n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.