loss

play
noun \ˈlȯs\

Definition of loss

  1. 1 :  destruction, ruin <to save the world from utter loss — John Milton>

  2. 2a :  the act of losing possession :  deprivation <loss of sight>b :  the harm or privation resulting from loss or separation <bore up bravely under the loss of both parents>c :  an instance of losing <His death was a loss to all who knew him.>

  3. 3 :  a person or thing or an amount that is lost: such asa losses plural :  killed, wounded, or captured soldiers <His regiment suffered terrible losses.>b :  the power diminution of a circuit (see 1circuit 4a) or circuit element corresponding to conversion of electrical energy into heat by resistance (see 1resistance 4a)

  4. 4a :  failure to gain, win, obtain, or utilize <loss of a game>b :  an amount by which the cost of something exceeds its selling price <The railroad claimed to be operating at a loss.>

  5. 5 :  decrease in amount, magnitude, or degree <a loss in altitude>

  6. 6 :  the amount of an insured's financial detriment by death or damage that the insurer is liable for

at a loss

  1. 1 :  uncertain as to how to proceed <was at a loss to explain the discrepancy>

  2. 2 :  unable to produce what is needed <at a loss for words>

for a loss

  1. :  into a state of distress <events had thrown him for a loss>

Examples of loss in a sentence

  1. The storm caused widespread loss of electricity.

  2. The company's losses for the year were higher than expected.

  3. A careless error resulted in the loss of the game.

  4. The team suffered a 3–2 loss in the last game.

  5. The team has an equal number of wins and losses.

  6. the party's losses in the recent election

Origin and Etymology of loss

Middle English los, probably back-formation from lost, past participle of losen to lose


First Known Use: 13th century



LOSS Defined for English Language Learners

loss

play
noun \ˈlȯs\

Definition of loss for English Language Learners

  • : failure to keep or to continue to have something

  • : the experience of having something taken from you or destroyed

  • : money that is spent and that is more than the amount earned or received


LOSS Defined for Kids

loss

play
noun \ˈlȯs\

Definition of loss for Students

  1. 1 :  the act or fact of losing something <a loss of courage>

  2. 2 :  harm or distress that comes from losing something or someone <We all felt the loss when he left.>

  3. 3 :  something that is lost <weight loss>

  4. 4 :  failure to win <It was the team's first loss.>

at a loss

  1. :  unsure of how to proceed


Law Dictionary

loss

noun

Legal Definition of loss

  1. 1 :  physical, emotional, or especially economic harm or damage sustained: as a :  decrease in value, capital, or amount — compare gain b :  an amount by which the cost of something (as goods or services) exceeds the selling price — compare profit c :  something unintentionally destroyed or placed beyond recovery d :  the amount of an insured's financial detriment due to the occurrence of a stipulated event (as death, injury, destruction, or damage) in such a manner as to create liability in the insurer under the terms of the policy Editor's note: As a general rule, economic losses are deductible from adjusted gross income under section 165 of the Internal Revenue Code. There are, however, numerous exceptions and limitations. actual loss :  the identifiable and calculable monetary detriment that is suffered or will be suffered as a result of an act or event actual total loss :  a loss in marine insurance in which the property (as a vessel or cargo) cannot be repaired or recovered — compare constructive total loss in this entry capital loss :  the amount by which the book value of a capital asset exceeds the amount realized from the sale or exchange of the asset casualty loss :  loss of property as a result of a fire, storm, shipwreck, or other catastrophic event consequential loss :  a loss that arises as an indirect result of an act or event —called also indirect loss — compare direct loss in this entry constructive total loss :  a loss in marine insurance in which the cost of repairing or recovering a ship or its cargo would be more than the ship or cargo is worth — compare actual total loss in this entry direct loss :  a loss arising directly from an act or event — compare consequential loss in this entry indirect loss :  consequential loss in this entry net operating loss :  the amount by which the expenses of operating a business exceed the income derived from it — see also carryback, carryover ordinary loss :  a loss from the sale or exchange of any asset that is not a capital asset partial loss :  a loss arising from damage to property that does not render it a total loss total loss :  a loss arising from damage to property that is so substantial as to make the property valueless to an insured

  2. 2 :  the act or fact of suffering physical, emotional, or especially economic harm or detriment



Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up loss? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

rude, impolite, or socially unacceptable

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ