noun Date: 15th century 1. a. an event or conjunction of events that causes an unfortunate or distressing result ; bad luck <
by misfortune he fell into bad company
had the misfortune to break his leg
b. an unhappy situation <
always ready to help people in misfortune
2. a distressing or unfortunate incident or event <
misfortunes never come singly
Synonyms: misfortune, mischance, adversity, mishap mean adverse fortune or an instance of this. misfortune may apply to either the incident or conjunction of events that is the cause of an unhappy change of fortune or to the ensuing state of distress <
never lost hope even in the depths of misfortune
. mischance applies especially to a situation involving no more than slight inconvenience or minor annoyance <
took the wrong road by mischance
. adversity applies to a state of grave or persistent misfortune <
had never experienced great adversity
. mishap applies to an often trivial instance of bad luck <
the usual mishaps of a family vacation

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Misfortune — is an Italian fairy tale, from Palermo, collected by Italo Calvino in his Italian Folktales.[1] Another telling of the tale appears under the title Unfortunate in A Book of Enchantments and Curses, by Ruth Manning Sanders. Synopsis A king was… …   Wikipedia

  • misfortune — misfortune, mischance, adversity, mishap are comparable when they denote bad luck or adverse fortune or an instance of this. Misfortune is both the most common and the most general term; it is applicable equally to the incident or conjunction of… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • misfortune — I noun accident, adverse event, adverse fortune, adverse lot, adverse luck, adversity, affliction, backset, bad fortune, bad luck, bale, blow, calamitas, calamity, casualty, cataclysm, catastrophe, comedown, destruction, disadvantage,… …   Law dictionary

  • Misfortune — Mis*for tune, n. Bad fortune or luck; calamity; an evil accident; disaster; mishap; mischance. [1913 Webster] Consider why the change was wrought, You ll find his misfortune, not his fault. Addison. [1913 Webster] Syn: Calamity; mishap;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • misfortune — / mishap [n] bad luck; disaster accident, adversity, affliction, annoyance, anxiety, bad break*, bad news*, blow*, burden, calamity, casuality, cataclysm, catastrophe, contretemps, cross, crunch, debacle, disadvantage, disappointment, discomfort …   New thesaurus

  • Misfortune — Mis*for tune, v. i. To happen unluckily or unfortunately; to miscarry; to fail. [Obs.] Stow. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • misfortune — (n.) mid 15c., from MIS (Cf. mis ) (1) + FORTUNE (Cf. fortune). Related: Misfortunate …   Etymology dictionary

  • misfortune — ► NOUN 1) bad luck. 2) an unfortunate event …   English terms dictionary

  • misfortune — [mis fôr′chən] n. 1. bad luck; ill fortune; trouble; adversity 2. an instance of this; unlucky accident; mishap; mischance SYN. AFFLICTION …   English World dictionary

  • misfortune — noun ADJECTIVE ▪ great ▪ personal VERB + MISFORTUNE ▪ be dogged by (BrE), have, suffer ▪ The expedition was dogged by …   Collocations dictionary

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