— defectible , adj. — defectibility , n. — defectless , adj.
n. /dee"fekt, di fekt"/ ; v. /di fekt"/ , n.
1. a shortcoming, fault, or imperfection: a defect in an argument; a defect in a machine.
2. lack or want, esp. of something essential to perfection or completeness; deficiency: a defect in hearing.
3. Also called crystal defect, lattice defect . Crystall. a discontinuity in the lattice of a crystal caused by missing or extra atoms or ions, or by dislocations.
4. to desert a cause, country, etc., esp. in order to adopt another (often fol. by from or to ): He defected from the U.S.S.R to the West.
[ 1375-1425; late ME defectus failure, weakness, equiv. to defec- var. s. of deficere to run short, fail, weaken (see DEFICIENT) + -tus suffix of v. action ]
Syn. 1. DEFECT, BLEMISH, FLAW refer to faults that detract from perfection. DEFECT is the general word for any kind of shortcoming or imperfection, whether literal or figurative: a defect in eyesight, in a plan. A BLEMISH is usually a defect on a surface, which mars the appearance: a blemish on her cheek. FLAW is applied to a defect in quality, caused by imperfect structure (as in a diamond) or brought about during manufacture (as in texture of cloth, in clearness of glass, etc.).