Dictionary

ordeal

noun or·deal \r-ˈdē(-ə)l, ˈr-ˌ\

: an experience that is very unpleasant or difficult

Full Definition of ORDEAL

1
:  a primitive means used to determine guilt or innocence by submitting the accused to dangerous or painful tests believed to be under supernatural control <ordeal by fire>
2
:  a severe trial or experience

Examples of ORDEAL

  1. <the hikers were finally rescued after a three-day ordeal in the wilderness>

Origin of ORDEAL

Middle English ordal, from Old English ordāl; akin to Old High German urteil judgment, Old English dāl division — more at deal
First Known Use: before 12th century
ORDEAL Defined for Kids

ordeal

noun or·deal \r-ˈdēl\

Definition of ORDEAL for Kids

:  a severe test or experience

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June 30, 2015
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