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: often used fig.
- Bridge designating a team that has won one game in an ongoing rubber and hence is liable to increased penalties
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 welə- 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").