pre·​dic·​a·​ment | \ pri-ˈdi-kə-mənt How to pronounce predicament (audio) , sense 1 is usually ˈpre-di-kə- \

Definition of predicament

1 : the character, status, or classification assigned by a predication specifically : category sense 1
2 : condition, state especially : a difficult, perplexing, or trying situation

Examples of predicament in a Sentence

The captain of archers fidgeted and coughed and rolled his eyes at his men, as if such cupidity and dishonor were an inevitable but minor aspect of the human predicament — Michael Chabon, New York Times Magazine, 6 May 2007 We saw photographs that week of buildings burning, stunned onlookers, dust-covered firemen. Very few pictures conveyed the fact that people just like us, our fellow passengers on the subway, suddenly found themselves in a mortal predicament and many died horribly. — Garrison Keillor, New York Times Book Review, 3 Sept. 2006 The President found himself in the backwash of earlier deals, and the demands of secrecy made his predicament the more vexing. — Taylor Branch, Parting the Waters, 1988 The governor has gotten himself into quite a predicament. I don't know how to get out of the predicament I'm in.
Recent Examples on the Web Yet, Pepiot escaped each predicament, pitching his way out of every dangerous situation to keep the Pirates scoreless in his first big-league outing. Houston Mitchell, Los Angeles Times, 12 May 2022 This presents a predicament for Shopify’s stock if the market is uncertain of how SFN will perform. Beth Kindig, Forbes, 6 May 2022 The girls’ predicament is treated sensitively and matter-of-factly, and stands as a sobering acknowledgment of the challenges pregnant young people face even today. Daniel Fienberg, The Hollywood Reporter, 3 May 2022 If the Witch’s murder is the engine that moves the novel forward, Norma’s predicament swiftly becomes its center, the eye of the narrative hurricane; a novel that had been about men becomes a novel about what men do to women. The New Yorker, 2 May 2022 Eventually, young Ian (John Bell) is alerted of his aunt and uncle’s perilous predicament and tracks them down, which comes in handy quite soon. Sharareh Drury, Variety, 1 May 2022 Black women often find themselves in this precarious predicament where despite knowing the way the state often exasperates already volatile situations, they are left with no choice but to call the police when an abusive situation worsens. Hanna Phifer,, 29 Apr. 2022 The next president of the NCAA will be required to follow orders, often from clueless stakeholders whose hubris led them to an entirely foreseeable predicament. Mike Finger, San Antonio Express-News, 28 Apr. 2022 Serum’s predicament underscores the vaccine oversupply that has crept up across a world once desperate for immunization against the coronavirus. Fortune, 22 Apr. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'predicament.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of predicament

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for predicament

Middle English, from Late Latin praedicamentum, from praedicare — see predicate entry 2

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

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Last Updated

15 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Predicament.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for predicament


pre·​dic·​a·​ment | \ pri-ˈdi-kə-mənt How to pronounce predicament (audio) \

Kids Definition of predicament

: a bad situation

More from Merriam-Webster on predicament

Nglish: Translation of predicament for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of predicament for Arabic Speakers


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