Catastrophe
Catastrophe Ca*tas"tro*phe, n. [L. catastropha, Gr. ?, fr. ? to turn up and down, to overturn; kata` down + ? to turn.] 1. An event producing a subversion of the order or system of things; a final event, usually of a calamitous or disastrous nature; hence, sudden calamity; great misfortune. [1913 Webster]

The strange catastrophe of affairs now at London. --Bp. Burnet. [1913 Webster]

The most horrible and portentous catastrophe that nature ever yet saw. --Woodward. [1913 Webster]

2. The final event in a romance or a dramatic piece; a denouement, as a death in a tragedy, or a marriage in a comedy. [1913 Webster]

3. (Geol.) A violent and widely extended change in the surface of the earth, as, an elevation or subsidence of some part of it, effected by internal causes. --Whewell. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Synonyms:

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  • catastrophe — [ katastrɔf ] n. f. • 1552; lat. catastropha, gr. katastrophê « bouleversement » 1 ♦ Didact. Dernier et principal événement (d un poème, d une tragédie). ⇒ dénouement. « La catastrophe de ma pièce est peut être un peu trop sanglante » (Racine). 2 …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • catastrophe — CATASTROPHE. s. f. Le dernier & principal evenement d une Tragedie. Grande catastrophe, sanglante catastrophe. Il signifie aussi figur. Une fin malheureuse. La vie de cet homme a esté long temps heureuse, mais la catastrophe en a esté funeste.… …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • catastrophe — CATASTROPHE. s. f. Le dernier et principal événement d une Tragédie. Grande catastrophe. Sanglantecatastrophe. Il ne se dit guère que d Un événement funeste. [b]f♛/b] Il signifie figurément Une fin malheureuse. La vie de ce Prince avoit été… …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie Française 1798

  • catastrophe — I noun accident, adversity, affliction, calamitas, calamity, cataclysm, collapse, contretemps, debacle, decimation, desolation, destruction, devastation, disaster, downfall, emergency, eradication, extinction, great misfortune, hardship, havoc,… …   Law dictionary

  • catastrophe — (n.) 1530s, reversal of what is expected (especially a fatal turning point in a drama), from L. catastropha, from Gk. katastrophe an overturning; a sudden end, from katastrephein to overturn, turn down, trample on; to come to an end, from kata… …   Etymology dictionary

  • catastrophe — *disaster, calamity, cataclysm Analogous words: *trial, tribulation, visitation: defeating or defeat, overthrowing or overthrow, routing or rout (see corresponding verbs at CONQUER) Contrasted words: *victory, triumph …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • catastrophe — [n] calamity; unhappy conclusion accident, adversity, affliction, alluvion, bad luck, bad news*, blow, calamity, casualty, cataclysm, contretemps, crash, culmination, curtains*, debacle, denouement, desolation, devastation, disaster, emergency,… …   New thesaurus

  • catastrophe — ► NOUN ▪ an event causing great damage or suffering. DERIVATIVES catastrophic adjective. ORIGIN Greek katastroph overturning, sudden turn …   English terms dictionary

  • catastrophe — [kə tas′trə fē] n. [L catastropha < Gr katastrophē, an overthrowing < katastrephein, to overturn < kata , down + strephein, to turn: see STROPHE] 1. the culminating event of a drama, esp. of a tragedy, by which the plot is resolved;… …   English World dictionary

  • Catastrophe — Dégâts causés par l ouragan Dennis en Floride en 2005. Le terme catastrophe désigne les effets dommageables d un phénomène brutal, durable ou intense, d origine naturelle ou humaine. Les conséquences d une catastrophe sont dans la fracture de la… …   Wikipédia en Français

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