misery

noun
mis·​ery | \ ˈmi-zə-rē How to pronounce misery (audio) , ˈmiz-rē\
plural miseries

Definition of misery

1 : a state of suffering and want that is the result of poverty or affliction War brought misery to thousands of refugees.
2 : a circumstance, thing, or place that causes suffering or discomfort the joys and miseries of life
3 : a state of great unhappiness and emotional distress My former boss made my life a misery.

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Synonyms & Antonyms for misery

Synonyms

agony, Gehenna, hell, horror, murder, nightmare, torment, torture

Antonyms

heaven, paradise

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Choose the Right Synonym for misery

distress, suffering, misery, agony mean the state of being in great trouble. distress implies an external and usually temporary cause of great physical or mental strain and stress. the hurricane put everyone in great distress suffering implies conscious endurance of pain or distress. the suffering of famine victims misery stresses the unhappiness attending especially sickness, poverty, or loss. the homeless live with misery every day agony suggests pain too intense to be borne. in agony over the death of their child

Examples of misery in a Sentence

The war brought misery to thousands of refugees. They were living in overcrowded slums in conditions of great misery. a source of human misery the joy and misery of life The last years of her life were a misery. Stop being such a misery.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The Venezuelan people are desperate to end the era of misery and hyperinflation. James Freeman, WSJ, "Ilhan Omar’s History of America," 15 Feb. 2019 In the midst of squalor, surrounded by adult predators and parents too mired in their own poverty and misery to protect the young and vulnerable, Zain uses his wits and his inner decency to try to do the right thing. Soren Andersen, The Seattle Times, "‘Capernaum’: A street kid in Beirut tries to do the right thing in powerful Oscar-nominated film," 5 Feb. 2019 Amidst the genre’s stories about real problems and legacy hauntings and the end-of-days and the threat of constant psychological warfare, there isn’t a lot of time to cultivate a vibe with someone who exists outside the misery marathon. Anne T. Donahue, Marie Claire, "Why Don't Women on Drama Shows Have Any Friends?," 27 Dec. 2018 Go it alone, and figuring out the best mascara for sensitive eyes is an exercise in misery. Rachel Nussbaum, Glamour, "The 10 Best Mascaras for People With Sensitive Eyes," 18 Oct. 2018 The student’s story turns out to be lovely—a sweet teen-age memory—and Fox’s mouth twists in misery. Emily Nussbaum, The New Yorker, "“The Tale,” a Wrenching and Wise Story About Sexual Abuse," 18 June 2018 Instead, voters seem to care most about making a real dent in the misery on our streets and sidewalks — the tent camps, open-air injection drug use and ubiquitous heaps of garbage — and ensuring more people can afford housing in the city. Heather Knight, San Francisco Chronicle, "It’s a really big deal that SF elected London Breed as mayor," 13 June 2018 Wednesday's 13-4 loss put the dagger in Miami's misery. Jordan Mcpherson, miamiherald, "After a 'slap in the face' in Chicago, the Marlins now face a tough test at home," 10 May 2018 That means ragweed and other plants start producing pollen earlier in the season, which will lead to more misery for allergy sufferers. Umair Irfan, Vox, "Winters are warming faster than summers. These US cities could lose weeks of freezing days by 2050.," 21 Dec. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for misery

Last Updated

26 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for misery

The first known use of misery was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for misery

misery

noun

English Language Learners Definition of misery

: extreme suffering or unhappiness
: something that causes extreme suffering or unhappiness
: a very unhappy or painful time or experience

misery

noun
mis·​ery | \ ˈmi-zə-rē How to pronounce misery (audio) , ˈmiz-rē\
plural miseries

Kids Definition of misery

: great suffering or unhappiness

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More from Merriam-Webster on misery

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for misery

Spanish Central: Translation of misery

Nglish: Translation of misery for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of misery for Arabic Speakers

Comments on misery

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