kismet

noun

kis·​met ˈkiz-ˌmet How to pronounce kismet (audio) -mət How to pronounce kismet (audio)
variants or Kismet
1
: a hypothetical force or personified power that determines the course of the future events : fate, destiny
… we left much of the trip planning to kismet and synchronicity, grateful for a chance to lose ourselves in the magic generated by anomalies, towering redwoods and sea air.Tanya Ward Goodman
They didn't know it right away, but when Heather Juergensen and Jennifer Westfeldt met at a New York theater retreat in the late '90s, it was kismet.Elaina Patton
[Richard] Wiseman [psychologist and luck researcher] has found that luck is not so much kismet but the result of a set of behaviors that you can choose to practice.Jessica Glazer
The next day I met the Dalai Lama again after meeting him in Sydney two weeks earlier (I think it's Kismet).Ruby Wax
2
: an inevitable and often bad outcome, condition, or end that a particular person or thing will experience : fate sense 2a
If it was her kismet to die this year, there was no point in defying fate.Amir Taheri
"This is my Kismet," they say if they lose a relative to war or illness, or if a job or a fortune falls into their laps.Christopher Torchia

Did you know?

Kismet Has Arabic Roots

Is it your fate to tie macramé while drinking coffee and eating sherbet in a minaret? That would be an unusual destiny, but if it turns out to be your kismet, you will owe much to Turkish and Arabic. We borrowed kismet from Turkish in the 1800s, but it ultimately derives from the Arabic qisma, meaning "portion" or "lot." Several other terms in our bizarre opening question (namely, macramé, coffee, sherbet, and minaret) have roots in those languages too. In the case of macramé and minaret, there is a little French influence as well. Coffee and macramé also have Italian relations, and sherbet has an ancestor in a Persian name for a type of cold drink.

Examples of kismet in a Sentence

he always said that it was kismet that they met at a showing of their favorite movie
Recent Examples on the Web For nearly two years the duo have been working together–Benton feels their meeting was kismet. Robyn Mowatt, Essence, 26 Feb. 2024 Ford also recently addressed the kismet that led to his casting at an EW and Netflix fan event in New York City. Maureen Lee Lenker, EW.com, 31 Dec. 2023 Since Who Decides War has earned its stripes in streetwear, this presentation felt like kismet. Kerane Marcellus, Essence, 19 Jan. 2024 The story of that night — the scrambling, the egos, the moments of creative kismet — is now told in Bao Nguyen’s documentary The Greatest Night in Pop, which will premiere Jan. 19 at Sundance before streaming on Netflix beginning Jan. 29. Rebecca Keegan, The Hollywood Reporter, 18 Jan. 2024 There’s a comfort in the kismet and the idea of an inevitable connection. Caitlin Brody, Glamour, 30 Nov. 2023 In another bit of kismet, Brosnahan and Isaac’s busy schedules freed up. Brent Lang, Variety, 4 June 2023 Call it kismet: Nick Jonas watched his future wife, Priyanka Chopra, win the Miss World pageant on television more than 20 years ago. Jessica Wang, EW.com, 11 May 2023 In fact, this project had a lot of kismet industry connections. Sarah Yang, Sunset Magazine, 7 Feb. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'kismet.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Turkish, from Arabic qisma portion, lot

First Known Use

1828, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of kismet was in 1828

Dictionary Entries Near kismet

Cite this Entry

“Kismet.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/kismet. Accessed 3 Mar. 2024.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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