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Definition of "effete" []

  • Depleted of vitality, force, or effectiveness; exhausted: the final, effete period of the baroque style. (adjective)
  • Marked by self-indulgence, triviality, or decadence: an effete group of self-professed intellectuals. (adjective)
  • Overrefined; effeminate. (adjective)
  • No longer productive; infertile. (adjective)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "effete" in a sentence
  • "The anti-intellectualism that is popular in political and social discourse in this country when referring to the "effete European culture" that puts a high premium on learning and our instant gratification mentality that stems from our over-commercialized society discourages and disparages the kind of hard, persistent, and concentrated work that produces good learning, not just test taking."
  • "So quipped Gore Vidal, after being told by William F. Buckley, Jr. that if he didn't stop calling the effete reactionary a crypto-Nazi, the "queer" would get socked "in the goddamned face.""
  • "Although many karate styles emphasize competition over the so-called effete “dancing” of “traditional” styles that “begin and end with kata,” all karate practitioners decry the sportification suspōtsuka of karate."