Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Weakened, worn out, impaired, or broken down by old age, illness, or hard use. See Synonyms at weak.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Weakened or worn out from age or wear

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Broken down with age; wasted and enfeebled by the infirmities of old age; feeble; worn out.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Broken down in health, physical or mental, especially from age; wasted or worn by infirmities; weakened, especially by age.
  • In geology, said of rivers that have reached the last stages of their existence, or of that portion of a drainage-course which has reached base-level and where deposition along the bed exceeds the amount removed by floods.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. lacking bodily or muscular strength or vitality
  • adj. worn and broken down by hard use

Etymologies

Middle English, from Old French, from Latin dēcrepitus, worn out, feeble : dē-, de- + crepitus, past participle of crepāre, to burst, crack.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin decrepitus broken down, from crepare to creak. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Several families with loved ones who are mentally ill are speaking out about what they call a decrepit, overcrowded, ineffective psychiatric facility at Vancouver General Hospital.

    CBC | Top Stories News

  • An American family of eight has gone missing while driving from Michigan to Alaska and police believe they may be somewhere in northern B.C. Several families with loved ones who are mentally ill are speaking out about what they call a decrepit, overcrowded, ineffective psychiatric facility at Vancouver General Hospital.

    CBC | Top Stories News

  • In this city, so many beat cops troll along at a snail's pace in decrepit squad cars.

    Graffiti: Mexico City's wall art emerges from the shadows

  • Located in decrepit strip malls, strewn with broken glass outside, parents walked their toddlers into these small, overheated spaces.

    Mimi Carter: Rhee Got Results, but Will They Last?

  • The earth had yielded of her fruits and now rested from her labour, worn and spent, taking no thought of comeliness, but waiting in decrepit indifference for her friend, the North Wind, to bring down the swirling snow to hide her scars and heal her unloveliness with its kindly white mantle.

    Sowing Seeds in Danny

  • It was falling down in decrepit shape, and since it was within a few feet from both their house and their other neighbors’ house, there was a real risk that it could take out a wall of a home if/when it collapsed.

    Matthew Yglesias » Centrally Planned Suburbia

  • Working closely with indie labels, bands did the dirty work of booking their own tours and driving in decrepit vans and sleeping on floors and in parking lots – hammering out a vibrant (and, yes, highly flawed) new underground culture where one didn’t exist before.

    Indie Publishing « So Many Books

  • The roller skates themselves are neither pristine nor completely decrepit, which is common for skating facilities, while the choice between traditional roller skates and modern inline skates will drastically affect the quality of the skating experience.

    Paly Voice

  • The morning is our childhood; the third hour may be understood as our youth, the sun as it were mounting to his height is the advance of the heat of age; the sixth hour is manhood, when the sun is steady in his meridian height, representing as it were the maturity of strength; by the ninth is understood old age, in which the sun descends from his vertical height, as our age falls away from the fervour of youth; the eleventh hour is that age which is called decrepit, and doting.

    Catena Aurea - Gospel of Matthew

  • I was looking at him, thinking, this is probably the least "decrepit" 78 year old person I have met in my life.

    Mary Wald: Archbishop Tutu: Bravo, Your Excellency

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