in ‧ firm /ɪnˈfɜːm $ -ɜːrm/ BrE AmE adjective
[ Word Family: noun : ↑ firmness , ↑ infirmity , the infirm; adjective : ↑ firm , ↑ infirm ; adverb : ↑ firmly ]
1 . weak or ill for a long time, especially because you are old:
Her grandmother is elderly and infirm.
2 . the infirm people who are weak or ill for a long time, especially because they are old:
The hotel is on a hill, which is not ideal for the infirm.
• • •
■ not physically strong
▪ weak not physically strong, sometimes because you are ill:
Tom’s had flu and he’s still feeling weak.
The doctors said she was too weak to have an operation.
He suffered constantly from a weak chest.
▪ frail weak and thin, especially because you are old:
a frail 85-year-old lady
My grandfather’s becoming quite frail now.
▪ shaky feeling weak in your legs and only able to walk slowly and unsteadily:
When I came out of hospital I was a bit shaky for a while.
▪ puny /ˈpjuːni/ especially disapproving small, thin, and looking very weak:
his puny white arms
He was a puny little boy who was often bullied at school.
▪ feeble especially written weak and unable to do much because you are very ill, very old or young:
For a week she was too feeble to get out of bed.
a tiny, feeble baby
▪ delicate weak and often becoming ill easily:
a delicate child
She had rather a delicate constitution (=her body easily became ill) .
▪ infirm formal weak or ill for a long time, especially because you are old:
a residential home for people who are elderly and infirm
There are special facilities for wheelchair users and infirm guests.
▪ malnourished formal weak or ill because you have not had enough good food to eat:
Half a million people there are severely malnourished.
The organization provides emergency feeding for malnourished children.