ominous was our Word of the Day on 03/09/2017. Hear the podcast!
Examples of ominous in a sentence
Not many sets of initials became universally recognizable during the twentieth century, and those that did often had ominous overtones, from SS to KGB. —Geoffrey Wheatcroft, Atlantic, March 2001
While politicians and multinational corporations extol the virtues of NAFTA … the ominous curtain is already up in a six-mile section at the border crossing at Mexicali … —Leslie Marmon Silko, Yellow Woman and a Beauty of the Spirit, 1996
Fighting against sensations that sought to claim him, he moved nervously and the note in his hand rattled with a dry and ominous whisper. —Richard Wright, Rite of Passage, 1994
Arranged in two long and ominous rows, the branding irons dangled from the ceiling in the center of the room, suggesting some sort of fence or jail … —Lewis H. Lapham, Harper's, May 1993
an ominous threat of war
He spoke in ominous tones.
Recent Examples of ominous from the web
The bodies of 74 migrants were recovered from a beach near the town of Zawiya in western Libya, rescuers said on Tuesday, an ominous sign before the high season for Mediterranean crossings.
Less than a month into the Trump presidency, and the forecast for science seems ominous.
The mysterious look of the production, fantastical and ominous, combines with the sensual singing of a handsome cast to create a romantic energy rare at the Met — or at any opera house.
The country received an ominous warning that President-elect Donald J. Trump’s protectionist rhetoric could have concrete effects when Ford Motor canceled a $1.6 billion investment.
Some Gawker employees struck a more ominous tone and expressed outrage over what the decision could represent.
What’s truly ominous for the Trump crusade is Latinos’ increasing political cohesion—which Republicans have catalyzed.
And the idea that insanity and birth go hand-in-hand is a bit ominous.
These example sentences are collected from online sources. Help us improve them by sending feedback.
Did You Know?
Ominous didn't always mean "foreshadowing evil." If you look closely, you can see the "omen" in "ominous," which gave it the original meaning of "presaging events to come" - whether good or bad. It is ultimately derived from the Latin word omen, which is both an ancestor and a synonym of our "omen." Today, however, "ominous" tends to suggest a menacing or threatening aspect. Its synonyms "portentous" and "fateful" are used similarly, but "ominous" is the most menacing of the three. It implies an alarming character that foreshadows evil or disaster. "Portentous" suggests being frighteningly big or impressive, but seldom gives a definite forewarning of calamity. "Fateful" implies that something is of momentous or decisive importance.
Origin and Etymology of ominous
First Known Use: 1580
Synonym Discussion of ominous
OMINOUS Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of ominous for English Language Learners
: suggesting that something bad is going to happen in the future
OMINOUS Defined for Kids
Definition of ominous for Students
: considered a sign of evil or trouble to come … the clouds there seemed to be growing darker, massing in ominous grey mounds with a yellowish tinge. — Susan Cooper, The Dark is Rising
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up ominous? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).