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From Middle English frelete, frailte, from Old French fraileté, from Latin fragilitās. Doublet of fragility.


frailty (countable and uncountable, plural frailties)

  1. (uncountable) The condition quality of being frail, physically, mentally, or morally; weakness of resolution; liability to be deceived.
    • 1748. David Hume. Enquiries concerning the human understanding and concerning the principles of moral. London: Oxford University Press, 1973. § 36, n. 1.
      the limitations and restraints of civil government, and a legal constitution, may be defended, either from reason, which reflecting on the great frailty and corruption of human nature, teaches, that no man can safely be trusted with unlimited authority ;
    • 2011 October 29, Phil McNulty, “Chelsea 3 - 5 Arsenal”, in BBC Sport[1]:
      For all their frailty at the back, Arsenal possessed genuine menace in attack and they carved through Chelsea with ease to restore parity nine minutes before half-time. Aaron Ramsey's pass was perfection and Gervinho took the unselfish option to set up Van Persie for a tap-in.
    Synonyms: frailness, infirmity
  2. A fault proceeding from weakness; foible; sin of infirmity.

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