Murphy's Law

noun

Definition of Murphy's Law

: an observation: anything that can go wrong will go wrong

First Known Use of Murphy's Law

1951, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for Murphy's Law

probably from Edward A. Murphy †1990 American engineer

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about Murphy's Law

Time Traveler for Murphy's Law

Time Traveler

The first known use of Murphy's Law was in 1951

See more words from the same year

Statistics for Murphy's Law

Cite this Entry

“Murphy's Law.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/Murphy%27s%20Law. Accessed 27 Sep. 2020.

Comments on Murphy's Law

What made you want to look up Murphy's Law? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Vocabulary Quiz Returns!

  • stylized drawing of woman pole vaulting across gap to get trophy
  • Which is a synonym of fuliginous?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Bee Cubed

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!