imbecile[im′bə sil, -səl; Brit, -sēl′, -sīl′]
- The definition of an imbecile is someone who is foolish or isn’t very smart.
An example of an imbecile is someone who treats people badly and does stupid things that don't make any sense.
- Obsolete a retarded person mentally equal to a child between three and eight years old
- a very foolish or stupid person
Origin of imbecileFrench imbécile ; from Classical Latin imbecilis, imbecillus, feeble, weak, probably ; from in-, without + baculus, staff (see bacillus): hence “without support”
- A person who is considered foolish or stupid.
- A person of moderate to severe mental retardation having a mental age of from three to seven years and generally being capable of some degree of communication and performance of simple tasks under supervision. The term belongs to a classification system no longer in use and is now considered offensive.
Origin of imbecileFrom obsolete French imbécille, weak, feeble, from Old French, from Latin imbēcillus : in-, not; see in–1 + possibly bacillum, staff, diminutive of baculum, rod; see bak- in Indo-European roots.
(comparative more imbecile, superlative most imbecile)
- (dated) Destitute of strength, whether of body or mind; feeble; impotent; especially, mentally weak.
- hospitals for the imbecile and insane
From Middle French imbécile, from Latin imbēcillus (“weak, feeble”), literally “without a staff”.