Also found in: Thesaurus, Encyclopedia.
a. Characterized by extreme refinement or self-indulgence, often to the point of unworldiness or decadence: "the effete taste of people surfeited with expensive comforts" (R.P.T. Davenport-Hines).
b. Having or reflecting an attitude of social superiority; pretentious or snobbish: "Throughout its amateur era tennis was a country club sport, denigrated as elitist and effete" (Stuart Miller).
2. Depleted of vitality, force, or effectiveness; exhausted: the effete monarchies of Europe.
3. Effeminate: "As a manly adventurer ... [Saint Paul] seemed the perfect rebuttal to our great, if unspoken, fear that the celibate vocation was effete" (James Carroll).
4. Archaic No longer productive; infertile.
[Latin effētus, worn out, exhausted : ex-, ex- + fētus, bearing young, pregnant; see dhē(i)- in Indo-European roots.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. weak, ineffectual, or decadent as a result of overrefinement: an effete academic.
2. exhausted of vitality or strength; worn out; spent
3. (Biology) (of animals or plants) no longer capable of reproduction
[C17: from Latin effētus having produced young, hence, exhausted by bearing, from fētus having brought forth; see fetus]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
1. lacking in wholesome vigor; degenerate; decadent: an effete, overrefined society.
2. exhausted of vigor or energy; worn out.
3. unable to produce; sterile.
[1615–25; < Latin effēta exhausted from bearing =ef- ef- + fēta having given birth, feminine past participle of lost v.; see fetus]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
Switch to new thesaurus
|Adj.||1.||effete - marked by excessive self-indulgence and moral decay; "a decadent life of excessive money and no sense of responsibility"; "a group of effete self-professed intellectuals"|
indulgent - characterized by or given to yielding to the wishes of someone ; "indulgent grandparents"
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
adjective weak, cowardly, feeble, ineffectual, decrepit, spineless, enfeebled, weak-kneed (informal), enervated, overrefined, chicken-hearted, wimpish or wimpy (informal) a charming but effete young man
Collins Thesaurus of the English Language – Complete and Unabridged 2nd Edition. 2002 © HarperCollins Publishers 1995, 2002
Collins Spanish Dictionary - Complete and Unabridged 8th Edition 2005 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1971, 1988 © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2003, 2005
Collins German Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged 7th Edition 2005. © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1980 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2007
effete[ɪˈfiːt] adj (pej) → decadente
Collins Italian Dictionary 1st Edition © HarperCollins Publishers 1995