weak-kneed


Also found in: Thesaurus, Idioms.

weak-kneed

(wēk′nēd′)
adj.
Lacking strength of character or purpose.

weak-kneed

adj
informal yielding readily to force, persuasion, intimidation, etc
ˌweak-ˈkneedly adv
ˌweak-ˈkneedness n

weak′-kneed′



adj.
yielding readily to opposition, pressure, intimidation, etc.
[1860–65]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adj.1.weak-kneed - lacking will power or resolutionweak-kneed - lacking will power or resolution; "the role of the dissenter is not for the weak-kneed"
irresolute - uncertain how to act or proceed; "the committee was timid and mediocre and irresolute"
Translations

weak-kneed

[ˈwiːkˈniːd] ADJ (fig) [person] → sin carácter, débil

weak-kneed

adj (after illness) → wackelig auf den Beinen (inf); (with fear, excitement) → mit weichen Knien; (fig inf)schwach, feige

weak-kneed

[ˌwiːkˈniːd] adj (fig) → debole, codardo/a
References in classic literature ?
Behind his counter he was a superior being, calmly conscious of special knowledge and worth; outside he was a weak-kneed, purblind, motorman-cursed rambler, with ill-fitting clothes stained with chemicals and smelling of socotrine aloes and valerianate of ammonia.
Every vehicle that passes he expects is going to run into him; and he never finds himself ascending or descending a hill without immediately beginning to speculate upon his chances, supposing--as seems extremely probable--that the weak-kneed controller of his destiny should let go.
Winks was the master of the upper third, a weak-kneed man with drooping eye-lids, He was too tall for his strength, and his movements were slow and languid.
The Trojans are a weak-kneed people, or ere this you would have had a shirt of stones for the wrongs you have done them.
Beauty Smith was known far and wide as the weakest of weak-kneed and snivelling cowards.
This commodious ottoman has since been removed, to the extreme regret of all weak-kneed lovers of the fine arts, but the gentleman in question had taken serene possession of its softest spot, and, with his head thrown back and his legs outstretched, was staring at Murillo's beautiful moon-borne Madonna in profound enjoyment of his posture.
As liberals largely react by arguing that the real domestic threat is the far right, the weak-kneed centrist position appears to be anxiety about protests in general: Many city leaders and college administrators now see any event where left and right might clash as a threat to public order.
Well, the ducks turned out to be weak-kneed chickens, who have just had the necks well and truly wrung by the EU negotiators.
Lovi Poe, stunning in a couture gown, couldn't help but become weak-kneed when she met Hollywood actor Eddie Redmayne.
Meanwhile, Billy Crudup is a weak-kneed worry-ball of insecurity as the out-ofhis-depth team commander.
a prosecutor cannot be a weak-kneed person going up against a major corporation in a fraud case.
Give weak-kneed politicians the boot or all those bonnie lads and lasses lost their lives for nothing.