Amendment and addition to WEEDY

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PaulQ

Senior Member
UK
English - England
Term: (A word or expression you have seen in writing) Weedy

http://www.wordreference.com/definition/weedy
the WRF definition is "(of a person or animal) scrawny or clumsy-looking.". In BE, this is not the current main meaning and the "clumsy-looking" does not fit at all.

Your definition or explanation:
However, the OED (This entry has not yet been fully updated (first published 1926).) does not fare much better as the "unhealthy" aspect needs removing:

"Of persons: Unhealthily[1] tall and thin; lanky and wanting physical vigour; also, weakly, of poor physique. Also without reference to physical qualities: feeble, half-hearted, weak; lacking firmness or strength."

The Collins Concise English Dictionary (also quoted in WRF) is more accurate for the current meaning: "Informal: thin or weakly in appearance." but does not include the references to actions or physical qualities of objects.

I would suggest: as a BE entry: Of an animate object: lacking strength, thin; also, weak, of poor physique. In reference to physical qualities (also of objects and actions): feeble, half-hearted, weak; lacking firmness or strength; irresolute.


Example: (An example of the term in use)
The third guy was a weedy little bloke they called ‘Prawn’. Thin build, pale skin, straggly fair hair with a wispy little beard on his chin. "The Cadet Sergeant Major" By C. R. Cummings

It'd be nice if someone sold a small, basic aluminium board which held a standard (e.g. WHS) A5 book and a pen or two and had a proper leg strap, not a weedy piece of elastic and velcro. http://www.pprune.org/private-flying/258745-quickies-while-flying-2.html

I set to work framing up my first shot, confident that the camera would perform as it has done for years, but it was not to be. My flash made a weedy attempt at working for one or two frames, then packed up altogether. http://www.divernet.com/Travel_Features/157042/the_second_sinking.html

I almost begin to explain that I haven’t left A&E all shift and I was just taking some air after delivering a baby but I can see that she does not give a flying fuck what weedy excuse I have. "Hospital Confidential" By Imogen Edwards-Jones.



[1] this seems to have been inferred from a Surtees quote that compared women to horses, and whereas "weed" as a horse would have included 'unfit', as far as I can see the current application to humans does not address health.

One or more places you have seen the term: (Please give URLs/links to web pages, or a full description of a print publication.)
See above


Have you looked for this term or meaning in dictionaries? Yes


Have you found it? Yes
 
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