Weak a. [Compar. Weaker superl. Weakest.]
1. Wanting physical strength. Specifically: --
(a) Deficient in strength of body; feeble; infirm; sickly; debilitated; enfeebled; exhausted.
A poor, infirm, weak, and despised old man. --Shak.
Weak with hunger, mad with love. --Dryden.
(b) Not able to sustain a great weight, pressure, or strain; as, a weak timber; a weak rope.
(c) Not firmly united or adhesive; easily broken or separated into pieces; not compact; as, a weak ship.
(d) Not stiff; pliant; frail; soft; as, the weak stalk of a plant.
(e) Not able to resist external force or onset; easily subdued or overcome; as, a weak barrier; as, a weak fortress.
(f) Lacking force of utterance or sound; not sonorous; low; small; feeble; faint.
A voice not soft, weak, piping, and womanish. --Ascham.
(g) Not thoroughly or abundantly impregnated with the usual or required ingredients, or with stimulating and nourishing substances; of less than the usual strength; as, weak tea, broth, or liquor; a weak decoction or solution; a weak dose of medicine.
(h) Lacking ability for an appropriate function or office; as, weak eyes; a weak stomach; a weak magistrate; a weak regiment, or army.
2. Not possessing or manifesting intellectual, logical, moral, or political strength, vigor, etc. Specifically: -
(a) Feeble of mind; wanting discernment; lacking vigor; spiritless; as, a weak king or magistrate.
To think every thing disputable is a proof of a weak mind and captious temper. --Beattie.
Origen was never weak enough to imagine that there were two Gods. --Waterland.
(b) Resulting from, or indicating, lack of judgment, discernment, or firmness; unwise; hence, foolish.
If evil thence ensue,
She first his weak indulgence will accuse. --Milton.
(c) Not having full confidence or conviction; not decided or confirmed; vacillating; wavering.
Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations. --Rom. xiv. 1.
(d) Not able to withstand temptation, urgency, persuasion, etc.; easily impressed, moved, or overcome; accessible; vulnerable; as, weak resolutions; weak virtue.
Guard thy heart
On this weak side, where most our nature fails. --Addison.
(e) Wanting in power to influence or bind; as, weak ties; a weak sense of honor of duty.
(f) Not having power to convince; not supported by force of reason or truth; unsustained; as, a weak argument or case. “Convinced of his weak arguing.”
A case so weak . . . hath much persisted in. --Hooker.
(g) Wanting in point or vigor of expression; as, a weak sentence; a weak style.
(h) Not prevalent or effective, or not felt to be prevalent; not potent; feeble. “Weak prayers.”
(i) Lacking in elements of political strength; not wielding or having authority or energy; deficient in the resources that are essential to a ruler or nation; as, a weak monarch; a weak government or state.
I must make fair weather yet awhile,
Till Henry be more weak, and I more strong. --Shak.
(k) Stock Exchange Tending towards lower prices; as, a weak market.
3. Gram. (a) Pertaining to, or designating, a verb which forms its preterit (imperfect) and past participle by adding to the present the suffix -ed, -d, or the variant form -t; as in the verbs abash, abashed; abate, abated; deny, denied; feel, felt. See Strong, 19 (a). (b) Pertaining to, or designating, a noun in Anglo-Saxon, etc., the stem of which ends in -n. See Strong, 19 (b).
4. Stock Exchange Tending toward a lower price or lower prices; as, wheat is weak; a weak market.
5. Card Playing Lacking in good cards; deficient as to number or strength; as, a hand weak in trumps.
6. Photog. Lacking contrast; as, a weak negative.
Note: ☞ Weak is often used in the formation of self-explaining compounds; as, weak-eyed, weak-handed, weak-hearted, weak-minded, weak-spirited, and the like.
Weak conjugation Gram., the conjugation of weak verbs; -- called also new conjugation, or regular conjugation, and distinguished from the old conjugation, or irregular conjugation.
Weak declension Anglo-Saxon Gram., the declension of weak nouns; also, one of the declensions of adjectives.
Weak side, the side or aspect of a person's character or disposition by which he is most easily affected or influenced; weakness; infirmity.
weak sore or weak ulcer Med., a sore covered with pale, flabby, sluggish granulations.