misfortune

noun
mis·​for·​tune | \ ˌmis-ˈfȯr-chən How to pronounce misfortune (audio) \

Definition of misfortune

1a : an event or conjunction of events that causes an unfortunate or distressing result : bad luck by misfortune he fell into bad company had the misfortune to break his leg
b : an unhappy situation always ready to help people in misfortune
2 : a distressing or unfortunate incident or event misfortunes never come singly

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Synonyms & Antonyms for misfortune

Synonyms

adversity, ill, knock, misadventure, mischance, mishap, tragedy

Antonyms

fortune, luck, serendipity

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Choose the Right Synonym for misfortune

misfortune, mischance, adversity, mishap mean adverse fortune or an instance of this. misfortune may apply to either the incident or conjunction of events that is the cause of an unhappy change of fortune or to the ensuing state of distress. never lost hope even in the depths of misfortune mischance applies especially to a situation involving no more than slight inconvenience or minor annoyance. took the wrong road by mischance adversity applies to a state of grave or persistent misfortune. had never experienced great adversity mishap applies to an often trivial instance of bad luck. the usual mishaps of a family vacation

Examples of misfortune in a Sentence

a victim of economic misfortune She endured her misfortune without complaint. It was my misfortune to be chosen first. Her injury was a great misfortune. He blamed the party's misfortunes on poor leadership.
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Recent Examples on the Web

When people have the misfortune of becoming homeless, their lives become much worse, and their path forward much more difficult. San Diego Union-Tribune, "From a goal to help globally to a calling to help locally," 7 July 2019 Scheele’s misfortune was to have almost made several discoveries that instead went to other researchers. Andrew Crumey, WSJ, "‘Mendeleyev’s Dream’ and ‘Elemental’ Review: Cracking the Chemical Code," 21 June 2019 Just like elite athletes in other sports suffer career-threatening injuries that sometimes lack explanation, tragic misfortune befalls horses as well. Gentry Estes, The Courier-Journal, "As horses keep dying on the track, the industry is left to answer impossible questions," 13 June 2019 That is, until misfortune struck for the Moroccans, who had gone through World Cup qualifying without conceding a single goal. Avi Creditor, SI.com, "WATCH: Iran Beats Morocco in World Cup on Stoppage Time Own Goal," 15 June 2018 The misfortune was being in the path of that stray bullet. Lindsay H. Jones, USA TODAY, "Aurora shooting survivor Zach Golditch hopes perseverance leads to NFL draft opportunity," 18 Apr. 2018 Three runs scored but misfortune seemed to play a role. Matt Breen, Philly.com, "Phillies fall to Marlins in Jake Arrieta's debut," 8 Apr. 2018 James, 32, decided to turn his misfortune into a positive, however. Stephanie Petit, PEOPLE.com, "James Middleton Says His Dogs Are 'Devastated' After His Special Pet-Friendly Bike Was Stolen," 20 June 2019 His misfortune had occurred not because of depravity, but by some error, some ambiguous action. The Economist, "Obituary: Claus von Bülow died on May 25th," 15 June 2019

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Statistics for misfortune

Last Updated

11 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for misfortune

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

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More Definitions for misfortune

misfortune

noun

English Language Learners Definition of misfortune

: bad luck
: an unlucky condition or event

misfortune

noun
mis·​for·​tune | \ mis-ˈfȯr-chən How to pronounce misfortune (audio) \

Kids Definition of misfortune

1 : bad luck
2 : an unfortunate situation or event

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Comments on misfortune

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appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

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