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 fateful (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 That same and fateful day for the industry, The District Court in The Hague ruled that Royal Dutch Shell, Europe’s largest oil company, must reduce the carbon emissions of its activities by 45 percent by 2030. Robert G. Eccles, Forbes, 6 June 2021 While fighting between Hamas and Israel captured the world’s attention for 11 days before a cease-fire was reached, the rupture within Israel could prove more fateful. Washington Post, 26 May 2021 That decision proved fateful as the Greyhounds opened the spring with their first victory at a tournament in almost two years. Edward Lee, baltimoresun.com, 16 May 2021 Another turning point came in November, when Newsom sat down for one of the more fateful meals in California political history. Julia Wick, Los Angeles Times, 27 Apr. 2021 The pace of the story picks up dramatically, pushing the reader back and forth in a crescendo of dueling dialogues that eventually meet on that fateful Valentine's night. Mary Cadden, USA TODAY, 11 Oct. 2020 Memories of the fateful night that the Beverly Hills Supper Club burned don’t fade for the ones who were there. The Enquirer, 28 May 2021 Robin's most fateful meeting would come in 1968, when he was introduced to Cash by the country icon's then-employee Barbara John. Chris Eggertsen, Billboard, 26 May 2021 In this climate, the Rockefeller Foundation convened a fateful October meeting of public health leaders, foundation members, and physicians to envision a modern public health curriculum. Fortune, 14 May 2021

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

15 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Fateful.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fateful. Accessed 16 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for fateful



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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