foible vs mannerism what difference

what is difference between foible and mannerism



(1640-50) From Early Modern Middle French foible (feeble) (contemporary French faible). Doublet of feeble.


  • IPA(key): /ˈfɔɪbəl/
  • Rhymes: -ɔɪbəl


foible (comparative more foible, superlative most foible)

  1. (obsolete) Weak; feeble.
    • a. 1648, Edward Herbert, 1st Baron Herbert of Cherbury, The Life of Edward Lord Herbert of Cherbury, page 46:
      The good Fencing-maſters, in France eſpecially, when they preſent a Foyle or Fleuret to their Scholars, tell him it hath two Parts, one of which he calleth the Fort or ſtrong, and the other the Foyble or weak []


foible (plural foibles)

  1. (chiefly in the plural) A quirk, idiosyncrasy, or mannerism; an unusual habit that is slightly strange or silly.
    Try to look past his foibles and see the friendly fellow underneath.
    • 1915, Of Human Bondage, by W.S.Maugham, chapter XLV
      They made up for the respect with which unconsciously they treated him by laughing at his foibles and lamenting his vices.
    • 1959, Meriden Record, “An ounce of prevention”, July 24 issue
      Final fillip in the Vice-President’s study has been a boning up on Premier Khrushchev’s favorite foible, proverbs. The bibulous Russian leader likes to throw out homely homilies in his speeches and conversations..
  2. A weakness or failing of character.
    • 1932, The Mistakes of Jesus, by William Floyd
      Jesus is reverenced as the one man who has lived unspotted by the world, free from human foibles, able to redeem mankind by his example.
  3. (fencing) Part of a sword between the middle and the point, weaker than the forte.


  • (a weakness or failing of character): fault

Related terms

  • feeble


Middle French


From Old French foible, feble.


foible m or f (plural foibles)

  1. feeble; weak

Derived terms

  • foiblement


  • French: faible

Old French


foible m (oblique and nominative feminine singular foible)

  1. Alternative form of feble

Derived terms

  • foiblement


Etymology 1

manner +‎ -ism


mannerism (plural mannerisms)

  1. A noticeable personal habit, a verbal or other (often, but not necessarily unconscious) habitual behavior peculiar to an individual.
  2. Exaggerated or affected style in art, speech, or other behavior.
  • APA Dictionary of Psychology, 2007

Etymology 2

From Italian manierismo, from maniera, coined by L. Lanzi at the end of the XVIII century.

Alternative forms

  • Mannerism


mannerism (countable and uncountable, plural mannerisms)

  1. (art, literature) In literature, an ostentatious and unnatural style of the second half of the sixteenth century. In the contemporary criticism, described as a negation of the classicist equilibrium, pre-Baroque, and deforming expressiveness.
  2. (art, literature) In fine art, a style that is inspired by previous models, aiming to reproduce subjects in an expressive language.

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