fate·​ful | \ ˈfāt-fəl How to pronounce fateful (audio) \

Definition of fateful

1 : having a quality of ominous prophecy a fateful remark
2a : involving momentous consequences : decisive made his fateful decision to declare war— W. L. Shirer
3 : controlled by fate : foreordained

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Other Words from fateful

fatefully \ ˈfāt-​fə-​lē How to pronounce fatefully (audio) \ adverb
fatefulness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for fateful

ominous, portentous, fateful mean having a menacing or threatening aspect. ominous implies having a menacing, alarming character foreshadowing evil or disaster. ominous rumblings from the volcano portentous suggests being frighteningly big or impressive but now seldom definitely connotes forewarning of calamity. an eerie and portentous stillness fateful suggests being of momentous or decisive importance. the fateful conference that led to war

Examples of fateful in a Sentence

His life changed on that fateful November evening. Hundreds perished on that fateful day. Her campaign took a fateful turn.
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Recent Examples on the Web Despite the title, Herschel's fateful vat fall and his later development of a trendy Brooklyn pickle brand, Rogen never indulged in the old-fashioned treat. Bryan Alexander, USA TODAY, "First look: Seth Rogen stars as a brine-preserved time traveler in HBO Max's 'An American Pickle'," 1 July 2020 Indeed, the region seems to have arrived at a fateful juncture. Joshua Mitnick, The Christian Science Monitor, "Netanyahu’s annexation dilemma: Making history, but at what cost?," 25 June 2020 Even more than Holmes and Watson, Crow and Doyle are outcasts, nearly friendless before their fateful introduction. Jim Higgins, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "In 'The Angel of the Crows,' a Sherlockian duo hunt Jack the Ripper," 19 June 2020 This was two years before her fateful Valentine's Day encounter with Boudleaux. Piet Levy, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "New book 'Nashville's Songwriting Sweethearts' looks at songwriting legend Felice Bryant's Milwaukee upbringing," 10 June 2020 CBS News journalists will look at the inequalities that have influenced the American landscape leading up to that fateful moment in Minneapolis. CBS News, "CBS News special "Justice for All" explores nationwide fury over racism and brutality in policing," 10 June 2020 Since that fateful day, Black Girl Sunscreen has expanded to Target stores nationwide—and just secured a $1 million investment in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Brionna Jimerson, Glamour, "Black Girl Sunscreen Is Actually Invisible on Brown Skin," 8 June 2020 The Oregonian had an assortment of reporters in Los Angeles to cover that fateful night, offering an historical snapshot of the agony through game stories, columns, sidebars and even first-person player diaries. oregonlive, "Devastating defeat: A look back at Portland Trail Blazers’ Game 7 loss to L.A. Lakers, 20 years later," 4 June 2020 The following Sunday – March 24, 2019 – Special Counsel Robert Mueller was seen leaving the church after attending morning services on what would turn out to be a fateful day in the Trump presidency. Sarah Elbeshbishi, USA TODAY, "St. John's Church has intersected with Donald Trump at key moments of his presidency," 2 June 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fateful.' 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 fateful

circa 1720, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for fateful

Time Traveler

The first known use of fateful was circa 1720

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Statistics for fateful

Last Updated

8 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Fateful.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fateful. Accessed 15 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for fateful


How to pronounce fateful (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of fateful

: having important results : producing a serious and usually bad result


fate·​ful | \ ˈfāt-fəl How to pronounce fateful (audio) \

Kids Definition of fateful

: having serious results a fateful decision

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More from Merriam-Webster on fateful

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fateful

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fateful

Spanish Central: Translation of fateful

Nglish: Translation of fateful for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fateful for Arabic Speakers

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