vulnerable[vul′nər ə bəl]
This little chick is very vulnerable.
- An example of vulnerable is an animal with no protection from its prey.
- An example of vulnerable is a person who is easily hurt by criticism at work.
- An example of vulnerable is a military base with limited defenses.
- that can be wounded or physically injured
- open to criticism or attack: a vulnerable reputation
- easily hurt, as by adverse criticism; sensitive
- affected by a specified influence, temptation, etc.: vulnerable to political pressure
- open to attack by armed forces
- Bridge liable to increased penalties and entitled to increased bonuses: said of a team which has won one game
Origin of vulnerableLate Latin vulnerabilis, wounding, likely to injure (also, in passive voice sense, vulnerable) ; from Classical Latin vulnerare, to wound ; from vulnus (gen. vulneris), a wound ; from Indo-European base an unverified form wel- from source Classical Latin vellere: see revulsion
- a. Susceptible to physical harm or damage: trees that are vulnerable to insects;b. Susceptible to emotional injury, especially in being easily hurt: a lonely child who is vulnerable to teasing.c. Susceptible to attack: “We are vulnerable both by water and land, without either fleet or army” (Alexander Hamilton).d. Open to censure or criticism; assailable: The mayor is vulnerable to criticism on the issue.
- Games In a position to receive greater penalties or bonuses in a hand of bridge. In a rubber, used of the pair of players who score 100 points toward game.
Origin of vulnerableLate Latin vulnerābilis, wounding, from Latin vulnerāre, to wound, from vulnus, vulner-, wound; see wel&schwa;- in Indo-European roots.
- vul′ner·a·bil′i·ty, vul′ner·a·ble·ness
(comparative more vulnerable, superlative most vulnerable)
From Late Latin vulnerÄbilis (“injurious, wounding"), from Latin vulnerÅ (“I wound").