debacle was our Word of the Day on 09/11/2010. Hear the podcast!
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Examples of debacle in a Sentence
- What a debacle. Next thing he knew, one of the patients would turn up dead. —T. Coraghessan Boyle, The Road to Wellville, 1993
- So what had been intended as an orderly hearing ended in a general debacle, for as soon as Fray Domingo saw his protector dragged toward the exit door, he leaped at the guards and began pummeling them. —James A. Michener, Texas, 1985
- Savings themselves evaporate in the course of such a debacle and thus the very wherewithal for reversing and retrieving the situation is lost … —Jane Jacobs, Cities and the Wealth of Nations, 1984
After the debacle of his first novel, he had trouble getting a publisher for his next book.
the financial debacle that was the stock market crash of 1929
Recent Examples of debacle from the Web
High electricity costs were an important factor, along with the refugee influx, in Chancellor Angela Merkel’s election debacle last year.
Luckily, everyone quickly forgot about the whole debacle when the star hit Instagram on Sunday to share an impromptu, casual, pure flames photoshoot staged on Beyoncé's private jet.
My boyfriend finds the whole debacle hilarious, and no amount of bathing and scrubbing evens out the patchiest areas.
This year Katy Perry was one of about half a dozen big names on the screen, joking about the Left Shark debacle at the Super Bowl in 2015 and comparing the uncoordinated backup dancer to the Oracle of Omaha himself.
Amid these debacles and many other skirmishes on the world stage, the date of Trump’s visit to the U.K. kept being pushed back.
Stephen Colbert is prepared to decode Melania Trump’s fashion after her eyebrow-raising wardrobe debacle last week.
The episode, despite its debacles getting started, ended on a high note with the Cornelia Marie crew.
Zuckerberg is also expected to talk to the European lawmakers about his company's commitment to Europe, actions Facebook has taken following the Cambridge Analytica debacle and the work the company is doing to protect the integrity of elections.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'debacle.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
The Origin of debacle is French
Debacle comes from the French noun débâcle, which comes from the verb débâcler, meaning "to clear," "to unbolt," or "to unbar." That verb is from Middle French desbacler, which joined the prefix des- (equivalent to our de-, meaning "to do the opposite of") with the verb "bacler" ("to block"). In its original uses, "debacle" meant a breaking up of ice, or the rush of ice or water that follows such an occurrence. Eventually, "debacle" was used also to mean "a violent, destructive flood." Naturally, such uses led to meanings such as "a breaking up," "collapse," and finally "disaster" or "fiasco."
Origin and Etymology of debacle
DEBACLE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of debacle for English Language Learners
: a great disaster or complete failure
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