risk

noun
\ ˈrisk How to pronounce risk (audio) \

Definition of risk

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : possibility of loss or injury : peril
2 : someone or something that creates or suggests a hazard
3a : the chance of loss or the perils to the subject matter of an insurance contract also : the degree of probability of such loss
b : a person or thing that is a specified hazard to an insurer
c : an insurance hazard from a specified cause or source war risk
4 : the chance that an investment (such as a stock or commodity) will lose value
at risk
: in a state or condition marked by a high level of risk or susceptibility patients at risk of infection

risk

verb
risked; risking; risks

Definition of risk (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to expose to hazard or danger risked her life
2 : to incur the risk or danger of risked breaking his neck

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Other Words from risk

Noun

riskless \ ˈrisk-​ləs How to pronounce riskless (audio) \ adjective

Verb

risker noun

Examples of risk in a Sentence

Noun I prefer not to expose my money to too much risk. The degree of risk is minimal. All investments have an element of risk. The trip didn't seem like much of a risk. I'm aware of the risks associated with this treatment. There is a risk of liver damage with this medication. Wearing a seatbelt greatly reduces the risk of injury or death in a car accident. We feel that this product presents a significant risk to public health. To me, skydiving is not worth the risk. Smoking is a risk to your lungs. Verb She risked her life to save her children. He risked all his money on starting his own business. He risked breaking his neck. She's risking being considered too sentimental. The country risked a war. brave people who risked being killed to help others I'm not willing to risk getting lost. I'm going to buy a map. The company is risking the loss of millions of dollars. It's not wise to risk traveling so soon after surgery.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The Iranians waged the bet, fraught with risk but deemed necessary, to launch a conventional attack on U.S. forces to avenge Soleimani's death. Tom Vanden Brook, USA TODAY, "Did Iran mean to kill Americans in its Iraq attack? The answer hints at how far Iran will go to challenge US," 12 Jan. 2020 Classes in a wide swath of towns and cities were suspended Monday, including in Manila, to avoid health risks posed by the ashfall. Washington Post, "Volcano erupts near Manila; villagers flee, airports shut," 12 Jan. 2020 In 2011, a pump seal failure caused the spill of more than 19,200 gallons of demineralized water into Lake Ontario, though with no significant risks to public health, according to local authorities. NBC News, "Warning of nuclear power incident in Canada was 'sent in error'," 12 Jan. 2020 Morrison said his government was developing a national disaster risk reduction framework within the Department of Home Affairs that will deal with wildfires, cyclones, floods and drought. Nick Perry, Anchorage Daily News, "Firefighter dies as Australia works on long-term battle plan," 12 Jan. 2020 Such strong winds are a key concern in an area at greatest risk: A zone that includes parts of Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Arkansas, the Storm Prediction Center warned. Jeff Martin, Fox News, "Tornadoes hit Missouri, Oklahoma, as severe storms move east," 12 Jan. 2020 The risks and the potential complications were deemed too great. Robin Wright, The New Yorker, "Donald Trump’s Iran Problem," 12 Jan. 2020 However, the Rangers (+170) are a little better, and a slightly larger risk. Joe Williams, USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire, "New York Rangers at St. Louis Blues odds, picks and best bets," 11 Jan. 2020 Countries that fail to comply risk new restrictions and limitations, while countries that comply can have their restrictions lifted. Jonathan Lemire, Time, "White House Considering Dramatic Expansion of Travel Ban," 11 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb But no team since the 2009 Colts has had to wrestle with the pursuit of history while risking the season's ultimate goal. Nathan Brown, Indianapolis Star, "10 years ago, Colts gave up a chance for a perfect season. What players say about it now.," 12 Jan. 2020 But as that article made clear, skiing inbounds is never risk free. Marc Peruzzi, Outside Online, "Just Because You're Inbounds Doesn't Mean You're Safe," 10 Jan. 2020 But for the budget-conscious, the extra time and not risking regret is worth it. oregonlive, "What to buy and what to skip in January," 4 Jan. 2020 Also, no gaffs, no ropes, and no handling—even a small sawfish can send you to the ER, so don’t risk your safety or the fish’s. David A. Brown, Field & Stream, "The Fight to Save the Sawfish," 13 Dec. 2019 The relationship between the U.S. and Canada would not be expected to change much as Scheer won’t risk renegotiating the new free trade agreement with U.S. President Donald Trump. Rob Gillies, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Canada’s Conservatives offer bland option to Trudeau’s flash," 20 Oct. 2019 Kerr can’t risk assuming that all eight newcomers, three of whom are rookies, know how to play at an NBA level — much less, in the Warriors’ system. Connor Letourneau, SFChronicle.com, "Warriors hope revamped player development staff can elevate young team," 4 Oct. 2019 The revelation that the bank spied on an employee on leave between jobs risks blowing up into one of the bigger -- or at least more unusual -- scandals to hit Credit Suisse. Patrick Winters, Bloomberg.com, "Credit Suisse Starts Investigation After Former Star Is Shadowed," 23 Sep. 2019 Basically, instead of risking a wardrobe malfunction, this keyhole like crop in your garments will bring an edge to your ensembles. Bianca Nieves, Teen Vogue, "The Biggest Trends From London Fashion Week 2019," 19 Sep. 2019

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

Noun

1655, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1660, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for risk

Noun

French risque, from Italian risco

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Learn More about risk

Statistics for risk

Last Updated

15 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Risk.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/risks. Accessed 23 January 2020.

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More Definitions for risk

risk

noun
How to pronounce risk (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of risk

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the possibility that something bad or unpleasant (such as an injury or a loss) will happen
: someone or something that may cause something bad or unpleasant to happen
: a person or thing that someone judges to be a good or bad choice for insurance, a loan, etc.

risk

verb

English Language Learners Definition of risk (Entry 2 of 2)

: to put (something) in a situation in which it could be lost, damaged, etc.
: to do something that could result in (something bad or unpleasant)
: to do (something that may have harmful or bad results)

risk

noun
\ ˈrisk How to pronounce risk (audio) \

Kids Definition of risk

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : possibility of loss or injury This adventure involves risks.
2 : something or someone that may cause loss or injury Smoking is a health risk.

risk

verb
risked; risking

Kids Definition of risk (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to expose to danger He risked his life to save the children.
2 : to take the risk or danger of I'm not willing to risk hurting myself.

risk

noun
\ ˈrisk How to pronounce risk (audio) \

Medical Definition of risk

1 : possibility of loss, injury, disease, or death hypertension increases the risk of stroke
2 : a person considered in terms of the possible bad effects of a particular course of treatment a poor surgical risk
at risk
: in a state or condition marked by a high level of risk or susceptibility patients at risk of developing infections

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risk

noun

Legal Definition of risk

1a : possibility of loss or injury
b : liability for loss or injury if it occurs the risk of loss passes to the buyer when the goods are duly delivered to the carrierUniform Commercial Code the risk of personal injury and property damage should be placed with the manufacturer rather than the consumerCase & Comment
2a : the chance of loss to the subject matter of an insurance contract : uncertainty with regard to loss also : the degree of probability of such loss — compare peril
b : a person or thing that is a specified hazard to an insurer a poor risk for insurance
c : an insurance hazard from a specified cause or source a war risk

Other Words from risk

riskless adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on risk

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for risk

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with risk

Spanish Central: Translation of risk

Nglish: Translation of risk for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of risk for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about risk

Comments on risk

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