Definition of mischief
1 : a specific injury or damage attributed to a particular agent the polished floor … often causes mischiefs — bruises, sprains, dislocations — Herbert Spencer
2 : a cause or source of harm, evil, or irritation; especially : a person who causes mischief He's a real mischief to his family.
Examples of mischief in a sentence
It's hard to keep him out of mischief.
the children claimed that setting off a firecracker was harmless mischief, but they got a lecture anyway
Origin and Etymology of mischief
Middle English meschief, from Anglo-French, misfortune, hardship, from Old French meschever to come out badly, mes- + chief head, end — more at chief
First Known Use: 14th century
MISCHIEF Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of mischief for English Language Learners
: behavior or activity that is annoying but that is not meant to cause serious harm or damage
: a playful desire to cause trouble
: harmful behavior
MISCHIEF Defined for Kids
Definition of mischief for Students
1 : behavior or activity that annoys or bothers but is not meant to cause serious harm It was a typical school plan to keep us out of mischief. — Richard Peck, A Year Down Yonder
2 : injury or damage caused by a person
Seen and Heard
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