Meaning of DEFECT in English


I. de ‧ fect 1 /dɪˈfekt, ˈdiːfekt/ BrE AmE noun [countable]

[ Date: 1400-1500 ; Language: Old French ; Origin: Latin defectus 'lack' , from defectus , past participle of deficere 'to go away from, fail, lack' ]

a fault or a lack of something that means that something or someone is not perfect:

All the cars are tested for defects before they leave the factory.

a genetic defect

• • •



▪ a serious defect

The movie has a few serious defects.

▪ a major defect (=very serious)

They have found a major defect in the program.

▪ a slight/minor defect

There are one or two minor defects on the car’s paintwork.

▪ a physical defect

Doctors examined the baby and could find no physical defects.

▪ a structural defect

Older buildings are bound to have some structural defects.

▪ a genetic/inherited defect (=one that is passed to you in your genes)

The condition is caused by a genetic defect.

▪ a birth defect (=one that you are born with)

About 11% of children have birth defects.

▪ a heart defect

Laura was born with a rare heart defect.

▪ a speech defect (=an incorrect way of saying certain sounds)

He had a speech defect which made it quite difficult to understand him.

▪ a character defect (=a fault in your character)

Laziness was just one of his character defects.

■ verbs

▪ have a defect

The old system had some serious defects.

▪ correct a defect

She had surgery to correct a defect in her right eye.

• • •


■ something wrong

▪ fault a problem in a machine, system, design etc that causes damage or makes it not work properly:

The fire was caused by an electrical fault.


a fault in the engine

▪ defect a fault in something such as a product or machine, resulting from the way it was made or designed:

Cars are tested for defects before they leave the factory.

▪ weakness a part of a plan, system, or argument that is not as good as the other parts, and makes it likely to fail:

What are the strengths and weaknesses of each method?

▪ flaw a fault in a plan, system, argument etc, especially one that makes it useless or not effective:

Your argument has a fundamental flaw.


There was one major flaw in his suggestion – we didn’t have enough money.

▪ bug a fault in a computer program:

A bug in the system was quickly fixed.

▪ glitch a small fault in the way something works, that can usually be easily corrected:

I noticed a small glitch when installing the software.

▪ mistake something that is wrong in someone’s spelling, grammar, calculations etc:

The article was full of spelling mistakes.

▪ there’s something wrong with something used when saying that there is a problem in a machine, car etc, but you do not know what it is:

There’s something wrong with the computer – it won’t close down.

II. defect 2 /dɪˈfekt/ BrE AmE verb [intransitive]

[ Date: 1500-1600 ; Language: Latin ; Origin: defectus , past participle; ⇨ ↑ defect 1 ]

to leave your own country or group in order to go to or join an opposing one

defect to/from

a Russian actor who defected to the West

—defector noun [countable]

—defection /dɪˈfekʃ ə n/ noun [uncountable and countable]

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English.      Longman - Словарь современного английского языка.