- not strong; liable to yield, break, or collapse under pressure or strain; fragile; frail: a weak fortress; a weak spot in armor.
- lacking in bodily strength or healthy vigor, as from age or sickness; feeble; infirm: a weak old man; weak eyes.
- not having much political strength, governing power, or authority: a weak nation; a weak ruler.
- lacking in force, potency, or efficacy; impotent, ineffectual, or inadequate: weak sunlight; a weak wind.
- lacking in rhetorical or creative force or effectiveness: a weak reply to the charges; one of the author's weakest novels.
- lacking in logical or legal force or soundness: a weak argument.
- deficient in mental power, intelligence, or judgment: a weak mind.
- not having much moral strength or firmness, resolution, or force of character: to prove weak under temptation; weak compliance.
- deficient in amount, volume, loudness, intensity, etc.; faint; slight: a weak current of electricity; a weak pulse.
- deficient, lacking, or poor in something specified: a hand weak in trumps; I'm weak in spelling.
- deficient in the essential or usual properties or ingredients: weak tea.
- unstressed, as a syllable, vowel, or word.
- (of Germanic verbs) inflected with suffixes, without inherited change of the root vowel, as English work, worked, or having a preterit ending in a dental, as English bring, brought.
- (of Germanic nouns and adjectives) inflected with endings originally appropriate to stems terminating in -n, as the adjective alte in German der alte Mann (“the old man”).
- (of wheat or flour) having a low gluten content or having a poor quality of gluten.
- Photography. thin; not dense.
- Commerce. characterized by a decline in prices: The market was weak in the morning but rallied in the afternoon.
Origin of weak
SynonymsSee more synonyms for weak on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for weaker
I begged the doctors to save my children [as] I watched them grow weaker and weaker every day.‘Her Survival Was a Miracle’: The 6-Year-Old Who Beat Ebola
Wade C.L. Williams
October 23, 2014
Palmer takes some "bearing with," and, like us all, has his weaker side.Will the Real Jim Palmer Please Stand Up
September 27, 2014
Brother Patrick became weaker and weaker and others stop coming around as they pondered over their own status.How Bureaucrats Let Ebola Spread to Nigeria
August 14, 2014
The older tribal power networks are weaker in a big city like Mosul.With Friends Like These, ISIS Is Doomed
July 24, 2014
But the soldiers and police there were weaker than their numbers suggested.The Paper Tiger of the Tigris: How ISIS Took Tikrit Without a Fight
June 29, 2014
Christian Greece weaker than at any time since she became a kingdom.The Grand Old Man
Richard B. Cook
The strong man was now the weaker; the father and not the daughter wept.Weighed and Wanting
Burke slapped his leg with an enthusiasm that might have broken a weaker member.Within the Law
It's an all-day process of the stronger annihilating the weaker.Her Father's Daughter
The passions are not stronger, but the control over them is weaker.Alice, or The Mysteries, Complete
- lacking in physical or mental strength or force; frail or feeble
- liable to yield, break, or give waya weak link in a chain
- lacking in resolution or firmness of character
- lacking strength, power, or intensitya weak voice
- lacking strength in a particular parta team weak in defence
- not functioning as well as normalweak eyes
- easily upseta weak stomach
- lacking in conviction, persuasiveness, etca weak argument
- lacking in political or strategic strengtha weak state
- lacking the usual, full, or desirable strength of flavourweak tea
- denoting or belonging to a class of verbs, in certain languages including the Germanic languages, whose conjugation relies on inflectional endings rather than internal vowel gradation, as look, looks, looking, looked
- belonging to any part-of-speech class, in any of various languages, whose inflections follow the more regular of two possible patternsCompare strong (def. 13)
- (of a syllable) not accented or stressed
- (of a fuel-air mixture) containing a relatively low proportion of fuelCompare rich (def. 13)
- photog having low density or contrast; thin
- (of an industry, market, currency, securities, etc) falling in price or characterized by falling prices
Word Origin and History for weaker
c.1300, from Old Norse veikr "weak," cognate with Old English wac "weak, pliant, soft," from Proto-Germanic *waikwaz "yield," *wikanan "bend" (cf. Old Saxon wek, Swedish vek, Middle Dutch weec, Dutch week "weak, soft, tender," Old High German weih "yielding, soft," German weich "soft," from PIE root *weik- "to bend, wind" (see vicarious). Sense of "lacking authority" is first recorded early 15c.; that of "lacking moral strength" late 14c. Weak-kneed "wanting in resolve" is from 1870.
Idioms and Phrases with weaker
In addition to the idioms beginning with weak
- weak as a kitten
- weak link
- weak moment, in a
- spirit is willing but the flesh is weak