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Definition of "imbecile" []

  • A stupid or silly person; a dolt. (noun)
  • A person whose mental acumen is well below par. (noun)
  • 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. (noun)
  • Stupid; silly. (adjective)
  • Well below par in mental acumen. (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 "imbecile" in a sentence
  • "Chagrined as he was at what he termed his imbecile stupidity in not knowing his own heart all these past months, and convinced, as he also was, that Alice and Calderwell cared for each other, he could see no way for him but to play the part of a man of kindliness and honor, leaving a clear field for his preferred rival, and bringing no shadow of regret to mar the happiness of the girl he loved."
  • "These imbecile is in serious need of a few episodes of Bill Nye the Science Guy."
  • "A teabagger win for any office would be extremely damaging to this country, but this imbecile is willing to risk it to teach the Dems a lesson."