damage

noun
dam·​age | \ ˈda-mij How to pronounce damage (audio) \

Definition of damage

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : loss or harm resulting from injury to person, property, or reputation flood damage sustained severe damage to her knee
2 damages plural : compensation in money imposed by law for loss or injury The judge awarded them $5,000 in damages.
3 : expense, cost "What's the damage?" he asked the waiter

damage

verb
damaged; damaging

Definition of damage (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to cause damage (see damage entry 1 sense 1) to don't damage the furniture returning soldiers damaged by war

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Other Words from damage

Verb

damageability \ ˌda-​mi-​jə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce damage (audio) \ noun
damager noun

Choose the Right Synonym for damage

Verb

injure, harm, hurt, damage, impair, mar mean to affect injuriously. injure implies the inflicting of anything detrimental to one's looks, comfort, health, or success. badly injured in an accident harm often stresses the inflicting of pain, suffering, or loss. careful not to harm the animals hurt implies inflicting a wound to the body or to the feelings. hurt by their callous remarks damage suggests injury that lowers value or impairs usefulness. a table damaged in shipping impair suggests a making less complete or efficient by deterioration or diminution. years of smoking had impaired his health mar applies to injury that spoils perfection (as of a surface) or causes disfigurement. the text is marred by many typos

Examples of damage in a Sentence

Noun The items were carefully wrapped to protect them from damage during shipping. The city sustained heavy damage during the war. Fortunately the boat suffered no serious damage in the storm. The fall caused considerable damage to her knee. The disease is known to cause permanent brain damage. The scandal caused significant damage to her career. You've said enough. Please leave before you do any more damage. He tried to repair the damage by apologizing, but it was too late. He apologized, but the damage was already done. Verb Please return any items that are damaged during shipping. Many homes were damaged or completely destroyed in the fire. The fall severely damaged her knee. Smoking can seriously damage your lungs. The scandal significantly damaged her career. This news will undoubtedly damage the governor's reputation. He was worried that his comments had seriously damaged their relationship. He's trying to repair his damaged reputation.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The damage inflicted by QAnon runs deep, and some families are struggling as relationships with relatives under its spell fray. Los Angeles Times, "Today’s Headlines: Life in a post-vaccine world," 25 Feb. 2021 The environmental damage includes air pollution, noise pollution and visual pollution. John E. Diehl, Star Tribune, "Counterpoint: I-35E was a rare victory for free people over freeways," 24 Feb. 2021 Johnson is not the only conservative who has sought to raise doubts about the motives of the Capitol rioters and the damage done on Jan. 6. Washington Post, "Critics slam Sen. Ron Johnson for unfounded claim that ‘fake Trump protesters’ led riots: ‘It’s disgraceful’," 24 Feb. 2021 Today, a House subcommittee is set to hear testimony to assess the damage from the insurrection. Aj Willingham, CNN, "5 things to know for February 24: Covid, Capitol riot, Rochester, White House, China," 24 Feb. 2021 One of the coffins was apparently damaged during this initial discovery, leading someone to try to repair the damage using concrete. Livia Gershon, Smithsonian Magazine, "Construction at Israeli Safari Park Unearths 1,800-Year-Old Sarcophagi," 23 Feb. 2021 Wednesday address will be followed by a visit from President Joe Biden, who is scheduled to travel to Houston Friday to assess the damage from last week’s storm. Alex Briseno, Dallas News, "Gov. Abbott to deliver televised statewide address on storm recovery Wednesday evening," 23 Feb. 2021 If malware gets into an enterprise, the damage can be reduced with faster detection, de-escalation and data-exfiltration restrictions. Stuart Madnick, WSJ, "More ‘Side Door’ Hacks Are Coming. Here Is How Businesses Can Prepare," 23 Feb. 2021 The damage may may not show itself for weeks or even months, especially in trees. Richard A. Marini, San Antonio Express-News, "The freeze-damaged plants in San Antonio yards have homeowners asking: How do I help my plants recover?," 23 Feb. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Two graduate students who support him told me their peers feared that working with him could damage their careers. New York Times, "Obscure Musicology Journal Sparks Battles Over Race and Free Speech," 14 Feb. 2021 Republican strategists studying the issue emphasize that extended campus closures could damage Biden with an important part of his coalition, moderate suburbanites who turned against Republicans in the Trump era. David M. Drucker, Washington Examiner, "Republicans look to profit from Biden schools struggle," 12 Feb. 2021 City officials have cautioned against such a move, warning that doing so would damage the city’s credit rating and borrowing power needed to take out debt to build roads and capital improvements. Joshua Fechter, San Antonio Express-News, "In mayoral rematch between Nirenberg and Brockhouse, San Antonio's pandemic recovery and police reform will take center stage," 31 Jan. 2021 The company is concerned that incoming winds could damage its power lines and spark wildfires. J.d. Morris, SFChronicle.com, "PG&E will cut power to 5,465 customers in its first January shut-off," 18 Jan. 2021 The Commodity Futures Trading Commission, which oversees financial derivatives, warned in a bipartisan report that climate change could damage the U.S. economy. Robinson Meyer, The Atlantic, "The Weekly Planet: The 5 Biggest Climate Stories of 2020," 22 Dec. 2020 Some privately feared that talk of contamination might damage the city's image – and its property values. CBS News, "Seeking to solve a pediatric cancer mystery," 13 Dec. 2020 And: In November [2019], the Fed warned that a prolonged period of low interest rates could damage the profitability of banks and life insurers and force pension plans to take bigger risks. Andrew Stuttaford, National Review, "Wall Street, Woke Capitalism, and China," 3 Dec. 2020 Some hypothesize that the virus itself could damage neurons. Eve Sneider, Wired, "An Election Week Case Surge, Vaccine Progress, and More Coronavirus News," 6 Nov. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'damage.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of damage

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for damage

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from dan damage, from Latin damnum — see damn entry 1

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Time Traveler for damage

Time Traveler

The first known use of damage was in the 14th century

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Statistics for damage

Last Updated

28 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Damage.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/damage. Accessed 8 Mar. 2021.

Style: MLA
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More Definitions for damage

damage

noun

English Language Learners Definition of damage

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: physical harm that is done to something or to someone's body
: emotional harm that is done to someone
: problems that are caused by a mistake, wrong action, etc. : bad or harmful effects on a situation, a person's reputation, etc.

damage

verb

English Language Learners Definition of damage (Entry 2 of 2)

: to physically harm (something)
: to cause problems in or for (something) : to have a bad effect on (a situation, a person's reputation, etc.)

damage

noun
dam·​age | \ ˈda-mij How to pronounce damage (audio) \

Kids Definition of damage

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : loss or harm caused by injury to a person's body or property How much damage was done to the car?
2 damages plural : money demanded or paid according to law for injury or damage The jury awarded $50,000 in damages.

damage

verb
damaged; damaging

Kids Definition of damage (Entry 2 of 2)

: to cause harm or loss to

damage

noun
dam·​age

Legal Definition of damage

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : loss or harm resulting from injury to person, property, or reputation
2 plural : the money awarded to a party in a civil suit as reparation for the loss or injury for which another is liable — see also additur, cover, mitigate, remittitur — compare declaratory judgment at judgment sense 1a, injunction, specific performance at performance

Note: The trier of fact determines the amount of damages to be awarded to the prevailing party. More than one type of damages may be awarded for a single injury.

actual damages
: damages deemed to compensate the injured party for losses sustained as a direct result of the injury suffered

called also compensatory damages

consequential damages
: special damages in this entry
direct damages
: damages for a loss that is an immediate, natural, and foreseeable result of the wrongful act — compare special damages in this entry
exemplary damages \ ig-​ˈzem-​plə-​rē-​ \
: punitive damages in this entry
expectation damages
: damages recoverable for breach of contract and designed to put the injured party in the position he or she would have been in had the contract been completed

called also expectancy damages

general damages
1 : damages for a loss that is the natural, foreseeable, and logical result of a wrongful act — compare special damages in this entry
2 : damages for losses (as pain and suffering, inconvenience, or loss of lifestyle) whose monetary values are difficult to assign
hedonic damages \ hi-​ˈdä-​nik-​ \
: damages deemed to compensate for the loss of enjoyment of life resulting from a wrongful act

Note: Hedonic damages are not recognized in all jurisdictions.

incidental damages
: damages recoverable under section 2-715 of the Uniform Commercial Code in breach of contract cases for losses that include expenses incurred in handling and caring for goods which were the subject of the contract, reasonable expenses incurred in obtaining cover, and any other reasonable expenses resulting from the breach that do not fall into any other category
liquidated damages
: damages whose amount is agreed upon by the parties to a contract as adequately compensating for loss in the event of a breach

called also stipulated damages

Note: Liquidated damages in an amount exceeding that needed to reasonably compensate the injured party constitute a penalty and are therefore void.

moratory damages
in the civil law of Louisiana : damages recoverable for loss resulting from an obligor's delay in performing

Note: Compensatory damages are recoverable in a case of failure to perform.

nominal damages
: damages awarded in a small amount (as one dollar) in cases in which a party has been injured but no loss resulted from the injury or in which the injured party failed to prove that loss resulted from the injury
presumed damages
: damages that are presumed under the law to result naturally and necessarily from a tortious act and that therefore do not require proof
punitive damages
: damages awarded in cases of serious or malicious wrongdoing to punish or deter the wrongdoer or deter others from behaving similarly

called also exemplary damages, smart money

special damages
: damages awarded in an amount deemed to compensate for losses that arise not as a natural result of the injury but because of some particular circumstance of the injured party specifically : damages relating to a business, profession, or property that are easily calculable in monetary terms

called also consequential damages

— compare direct damages in this entry general damages in this entry

Note: Because special damages do not arise in every case, they must be specifically requested in the pleadings. This is an issue of particular importance in cases of harm to reputation, such as slander, libel, and malicious prosecution.

stipulated damages
in the civil law of Louisiana : liquidated damages in this entry
treble damages \ ˈtre-​bəl-​ \
: damages awarded in an amount that is three times the amount for which the trier of fact finds the wrongdoer liable

Note: Treble damages are recoverable where authorized by statute and are usually imposed as a punishment.

3 plural : losses for which damages are recoverable did not incur damages, because he was unlikely to win the foreclosure case— Rosalind Resnick

damage

adjective

Legal Definition of damage (Entry 2 of 2)

: of or relating to damages a damage action a damage remedy

History and Etymology for damage

Noun

Old French, from dam injury, harm, from Latin damnum financial loss, fine

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