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Borrowed 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 or seduced.
    • 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.