Share this entry

Share this page


Line breaks: fal|lible
Pronunciation: /ˈfalɪb(ə)l

Definition of fallible in English:


Capable of making mistakes or being wrong: experts can be fallible
More example sentences
  • In order to savour the flashing returns and the artistic volleys, we must suffer the faltering second serve and the fallible forehand.
  • But the expert rules are fallible, and there will always be false positives and false negatives.
  • Dr Martin Luther King Jr was also at times as fallible as the next human.
error-prone, erring, errant, liable to err, prone to err, open to error;
imperfect, flawed, frail, weak


late Middle English: from medieval Latin fallibilis, from Latin fallere 'deceive'.



Pronunciation: /-ˈbɪlɪti/
Example sentences
  • It's time to look seriously at whether we really need politicians anyway, given their fallibility and human weakness.
  • One version of the argument against preventive war rests on the fallibility of all prediction: how can we KNOW that a war is coming?
  • While I wholeheartedly recognise the magnificent job done by our match officials, they are mere mortals like the rest of us and will succumb to human fallibility on occasion.


Example sentences
  • Contrary to what they believe, the public prefer their politicians fallibly human, rather than joyless teetotallers whose only addiction is to squash or golf.
  • Why do we build up these spiritual blogstars and then cry foul when our idol turns out to be just as fallibly human as we are?
  • King and Queen were absolute monarchs, yet fallibly human.

Definition of fallible in:

Share this entry

Share this page


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day vicarious
Pronunciation: vɪˈkɛːrɪəs
experienced in the imagination through another person's feelings…