FAIL

fail

(verb) get worse; “Her health is declining”

fail, go bad, give way, die, give out, conk out, go, break, break down

(verb) stop operating or functioning; “The engine finally went”; “The car died on the road”; “The bus we travelled in broke down on the way to town”; “The coffee maker broke”; “The engine failed on the way to town”; “her eyesight went after the accident”

fail, run out, give out

(verb) prove insufficient; “The water supply for the town failed after a long drought”

fail, betray

(verb) disappoint, prove undependable to; abandon, forsake; “His sense of smell failed him this time”; “His strength finally failed him”; “His children failed him in the crisis”

fail

(verb) become bankrupt or insolvent; fail financially and close; “The toy company went bankrupt after the competition hired cheap Mexican labor”; “A number of banks failed that year”

fail, flunk, bomb, flush it

(verb) fail to get a passing grade; “She studied hard but failed nevertheless”; “Did I fail the test?”

fail

(verb) judge unacceptable; “The teacher failed six students”

fail, go wrong, miscarry

(verb) be unsuccessful; “Where do today’s public schools fail?”; “The attempt to rescue the hostages failed miserably”

fail, neglect

(verb) fail to do something; leave something undone; “She failed to notice that her child was no longer in his crib”; “The secretary failed to call the customer and the company lost the account”

fail

(verb) be unable; “I fail to understand your motives”

Source: WordNet® 3.1


Etymology 1

Verb

fail (third-person singular simple present fails, present participle failing, simple past and past participle failed)

(intransitive) To be unsuccessful.

(transitive) Not to achieve a particular stated goal. (Usage note: The direct object of this word is usually an infinitive.)

(transitive) To neglect.

(intransitive) Of a machine, etc.: to cease to operate correctly.

(transitive) To be wanting to, to be insufficient for, to disappoint, to desert.

(ambitransitive) To receive one or more non-passing grades in academic pursuits.

(transitive) To give a student a non-passing grade in an academic endeavour.

(transitive, obsolete) To miss attaining; to lose.

To be wanting; to fall short; to be or become deficient in any measure or degree up to total absence.

(archaic) To be affected with want; to come short; to lack; to be deficient or unprovided; used with of.

(archaic) To fall away; to become diminished; to decline; to decay; to sink.

(archaic) To deteriorate in respect to vigour, activity, resources, etc.; to become weaker.

(obsolete) To perish; to die; used of a person.

(obsolete) To err in judgment; to be mistaken.

To become unable to meet one's engagements; especially, to be unable to pay one's debts or discharge one's business obligation; to become bankrupt or insolvent.

Usage notes

• This is a catenative verb which takes the to infinitive. See English catenative verbs

Synonyms

• (to be unsuccessful): fall on one's face

• (to receive non-passing grades in academic pursuits): flunk (US)

Antonyms

• (to be unsuccessful): succeed

Noun

fail (countable and uncountable, plural fails)

(uncountable, slang) Poor quality; substandard workmanship.

(slang) A failure (condition of being unsuccessful)

(slang, US) A failure (something incapable of success)

A failure, especially of a financial transaction (a termination of an action).

A failing grade in an academic examination.

Adjective

fail (comparative more fail, superlative most fail)

(slang, US) That is a failure.

Etymology 2

Noun

fail (plural fails)

A piece of turf cut from grassland.

Anagrams

• -afil, alif, fila

Proper noun

Fail (plural Fails)

A surname.

Statistics

• According to the 2010 United States Census, Fail is the 30863rd most common surname in the United States, belonging to 754 individuals. Fail is most common among White (82.23%) and Black/African American (13.4%) individuals.

Anagrams

• -afil, alif, fila

Source: Wiktionary


Fail v. i. [imp. & p. p. Failed; p. pr. & vb. n. Failing.] Etym: [F. failir, fr. L. fallere, falsum, to deceive, akin to E. fall. See Fail, and cf. Fallacy, False, Fault.]

1. To be wanting; to fall short; to be or become deficient in any measure or degree up to total absence; to cease to be furnished in the usual or expected manner, or to be altogether cut off from supply; to be lacking; as, streams fail; crops fail. As the waters fail from the sea. Job xiv. 11. Till Lionel's issue fails, his should not reign. Shak.

2. To be affected with want; to come short; to lack; to be deficient or unprovided; -- used with of. If ever they fail of beauty, this failure is not be attributed to their size. Berke.

3. To fall away; to become diminished; to decline; to decay; to sink. When earnestly they seek Such proof, conclude they then begin to fail. Milton.

4. To deteriorate in respect to vigor, activity, resources, etc.; to become weaker; as, a sick man fails.

5. To perish; to die; -- used of a person. [Obs.] Had the king in his last sickness failed. Shak.

6. To be found wanting with respect to an action or a duty to be performed, a result to be secured, etc.; to miss; not to fulfill expectation. Take heed now that ye fail not to do this. Ezra iv. 22. Either my eyesight fails, or thou look'st pale. Shak.

7. To come short of a result or object aimed at or desired ; to be baffled or frusrated. Our envious foe hath failed. Milton.

8. To err in judgment; to be mistaken. Which ofttimes may succeed, so as perhaps Shall grieve him, if I fail not. Milton.

9. To become unable to meet one's engagements; especially, to be unable to pay one's debts or discharge one's business obligation; to become bankrupt or insolvent.

Fail, v. t.

1. To be wanting to ; to be insufficient for; to disappoint; to desert. There shall not fail thee a man on the throne. 1 Kings ii. 4.

2. To miss of attaining; to lose. [R.] Though that seat of earthly bliss be failed. Milton.

Fail, n. Etym: [OF. faille, from failir. See Fail, v. i.]

1. Miscarriage; failure; deficiency; fault; -- mostly superseded by failure or failing, except in the phrase without fail. "His highness' fail of issue." Shak.

2. Death; decease. [Obs.] Shak.

Source: Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary 1913 Edition



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