weakness

[week-nis]
See more synonyms for weakness on Thesaurus.com
noun
  1. the state or quality of being weak; lack of strength, firmness, vigor, or the like; feebleness.
  2. an inadequate or defective quality, as in a person's character; slight fault or defect: to show great sympathy for human weaknesses.
  3. a self-indulgent liking or special fondness, as for a particular thing: I've always had a weakness for the opera.
  4. an object of special desire; something very difficult to resist: Chocolates were her weakness.

Origin of weakness

First recorded in 1250–1300, weakness is from the Middle English word weikenes. See weak, -ness
Related formsnon·weak·ness, noun

Synonyms for weakness

See more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
1. fragility. 2. flaw. See fault. 3. penchant, passion, hunger, appetite.

Antonyms for weakness

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018


Examples from the Web for weaknesses

Contemporary Examples of weaknesses

Historical Examples of weaknesses

  • He was used to dealing with pique in women, and had found it the most manageable of weaknesses.

    Malbone

    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • She knew him now—all his small indolences, his affectations, his weaknesses.

    K

    Mary Roberts Rinehart

  • There is nothing like building our fortune on the weaknesses of mankind.'

  • It is entirely free from the weaknesses of the ordinary Sunday school book.

  • Ought he not to be dead to all the weaknesses of this world?


British Dictionary definitions for weaknesses

weakness

noun
  1. the state or quality of being weak
  2. a deficiency or failing, as in a person's character
  3. a self-indulgent fondness or likinga weakness for chocolates
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 weaknesses

weakness

n.

c.1300, "quality of being weak," from weak + -ness. Meaning "a disadvantage, vulnerability" is from 1590s. That of "self-indulgent fondness" is from 1712; meaning "thing for which one has an indulgent fondness" is from 1822.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with weaknesses

weakness

see have a weakness for.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.