miserable

adjective
mis·​er·​a·​ble | \ ˈmi-zər-bəl, ˈmiz-rə-, ˈmi-zə-rə- How to pronounce miserable (audio) \

Definition of miserable

1 : being in a pitiable state of distress or unhappiness (as from want or shame) miserable refugees
2a : wretchedly inadequate or meager (see meager sense 2) a miserable hovel
b : causing extreme discomfort or unhappiness a miserable situation miserable weather his miserable childhood
3 : being likely to discredit or shame his miserable neglect of his wife had a miserable, snide contempt for our country— Joyce Winslow

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Other Words from miserable

miserable noun
miserableness noun
miserably \ ˈmi-​zər-​blē , ˈmiz-​rə-​ , ˈmi-​zə-​rə-​ How to pronounce miserably (audio) \ adverb

Examples of miserable in a Sentence

He had a miserable childhood. My boss is making my life thoroughly miserable with her constant demands and criticism. He felt lonely and miserable after his divorce. I've had a miserable cold for the past week. He lived in a miserable little shack.
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Recent Examples on the Web The weather might be miserable, but things are looking up all around the Cincinnati football landscape. Jason Hoffman, Cincinnati.com, "Guest TML: Cincinnati again could land Joe Burrow. No way this gets messed up. Right?," 18 Dec. 2019 The Beavers faced two physical defenses this season in Utah and Washington, and both were miserable failures. oregonlive, "Five reasons Oregon State could beat Oregon in Saturday’s 123rd Civil War, and the pick," 30 Nov. 2019 As a result, we are treated to often fascinating digressions on the origins of terrorism, celebrity and the tabloid media; the tricky physics of cannon manufacture; and the miserable living conditions of the average 17th-century seaman. Adam Higginbotham, New York Times, "The Pirates’ Booty That Changed the Course of History," 12 May 2020 Soma was a kind of neutered psychedelic—a miracle drug that allowed users to escape the miserable conditions of their existence, while also blotting out any urge to question the nature of those conditions. John Semley, The New Republic, "Turn On, Tune In, Cash In," 27 Apr. 2020 On the opposite end of the ride is Layton Well (Daveed Diggs), an intense ex-homicide cop who’s struggling to cope with miserable conditions in the tail of the train. Jeanne Jakle, ExpressNews.com, "Jeanne Jakle: 10 new TV series to watch in May, including ‘City of Angels,’ ‘Upload,’ ‘Hollywood’ and ‘Snowpiercer’," 24 Apr. 2020 The news from overtaxed hospitals is miserable; the economic toll is harrowing. James Lileks, National Review, "The Blather and the Bile," 16 Apr. 2020 Farrow’s rendition of Weinstein’s voice is gratifying: a miserable whine alternating with a browbeating bellow. Washington Post, "Diane Keaton and Ronan Farrow show the challenges of narrating your own audiobook," 14 Apr. 2020 And so the plot is that of a fantastical and miserable quest, like The Lord of the Rings or The Wizard of Oz, except the monsters are leering men and deceitful medical personnel and relentless, mind-bending legal hurdles. Kaitlin Menza, Marie Claire, "The Excruciating Necessity of 'Never Rarely Sometimes Always'," 10 Apr. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for miserable

Middle English, from Middle French, from Latin miserabilis wretched, pitiable, from miserari to pity, from miser

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Time Traveler for miserable

Time Traveler

The first known use of miserable was in the 15th century

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Statistics for miserable

Last Updated

30 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Miserable.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/miserable. Accessed 2 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for miserable

miserable

adjective
How to pronounce miserable (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of miserable

: very unhappy
: very sick or unwell
: very severe or unpleasant

miserable

adjective
mis·​er·​a·​ble | \ ˈmi-zə-rə-bəl How to pronounce miserable (audio) , ˈmi-zər-bəl \

Kids Definition of miserable

1 : very unhappy or distressed The stranded passengers were miserable.
2 : causing great discomfort a miserable cold
3 : very unsatisfactory miserable weather

Other Words from miserable

miserably \ -​blē \ adverb We failed miserably.

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Comments on miserable

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