1. [ verb ] fail to do something; leave something undone
Synonyms: neglect

"She failed to notice that her child was no longer in his crib" "The secretary failed to call the customer and the company lost the account"

Related terms: miss default strike_out choke muff failure negligence
2. [ verb ] be unsuccessful
Synonyms: go_wrong miscarry

"Where do today's public schools fail?" "The attempt to rescue the hostages failed miserably"

Related terms: succeed miss miss fall overreach botch strike_out fall_through take_it_on_the_chin shipwreck failure failure miscarriage
3. [ verb ] disappoint, prove undependable to; abandon, forsake
Synonyms: betray

"His sense of smell failed him this time" "His strength finally failed him" "His children failed him in the crisis"

Related terms: disappoint
4. [ verb ] stop operating or functioning
Synonyms: break_down break die go_bad go conk_out give_out give_way

"The engine finally went" "The car died on the road" "The bus we travelled in broke down on the way to town" "The coffee maker broke" "The engine failed on the way to town" "her eyesight went after the accident"

Related terms: change blow_out misfire crash malfunction die break failure
5. [ verb ] be unable

"I fail to understand your motives"

Related terms: pull_off
6. [ verb ] judge unacceptable

"The teacher failed six students"

Related terms: pass judge
7. [ verb ] become bankrupt or insolvent; fail financially and close

"The toy company went bankrupt after the competition hired cheap Mexican labor" "A number of banks failed that year"

Related terms: bankruptcy
8. [ verb ] fall short in what is expected

"She failed in her obligations as a good daughter-in-law" "We must not fail his obligation to the victims of the Holocaust"

Related terms: failure
9. [ verb ] fail to get a passing grade
Synonyms: bomb flush_it flunk

"She studied hard but failed nevertheless" "Did I fail the test?"

Related terms: pass pass turkey failing
10. [ verb ] prove insufficient
Synonyms: give_out run_out

"The water supply for the town failed after a long drought"

11. [ noun ] Last name, frequency rank in the U.S. is 20916
12. [ verb ] get worse

"Her health is declining"

Related terms: worsen
Similar spelling:   faille