ru·​in·​ous | \ ˈrü-ə-nəs How to pronounce ruinous (audio) \

Definition of ruinous

2 : causing or tending to cause ruin

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Other Words from ruinous

ruinously adverb
ruinousness noun

Examples of ruinous in a Sentence

The house has fallen into a ruinous state. a ruinous miscalculation of the financial markets left them bankrupt

Recent Examples on the Web

Iraq declared victory over IS in late 2017 after a ruinous and bloody war. Qassim Abdul-zahra, The Seattle Times, "Iraqi leader says there’s ‘consensus’ on US troops presence," 30 Mar. 2019 Iraq’s next leader faces a slew of challenges stemming from the ruinous occupation of the Islamic State and the nearly four-year war to expel the militant group. Washington Post, "Iraqis vote in first national election after toppling of Islamic State," 14 May 2018 Frankly, this whole thing seems astonishingly mean-spirited and could have a ruinous effect if applied to other products. Joe Queenan, WSJ, "Parmesan vs. Sarmesan: How Dare the Europeans Move Our Cheese," 25 May 2018 There is a handsome living to be made these days for attorneys skilled in the art of image control, including preemptively shutting down unfavorable media coverage by threatening journalists or their sources with ruinous lawsuits. Ben Widdicombe, Town & Country, "How Much Does It Cost to Keep Your Name Out of the News?," 18 Jan. 2019 Auto makers worry that without federal subsidies the state EV mandates may make EV production financially ruinous. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "The Electric Kool-Aid Subsidy Test," 30 Dec. 2018 Contrary to the dire warnings in many quarters, Mr. Trump’s unorthodox methods haven’t set off ruinous trade wars or caused a global depression. Walter Russell Mead, WSJ, "Trump’s Instincts Triumph on Trade," 1 Oct. 2018 Anyway the food’s beside the point: At its core, Lady Pepa is a hangout—a well-padded final stop on the road out of a ruinous night, where Madrileños come to belt out Billy Joel at the feet of a real-life piano man, free from shame or shade. Cnt Editors, Condé Nast Traveler, "Loud, Crowded, Grease-Stained, and Gloriously Drunk: Where the World Eats After Hours," 8 Oct. 2018 Those interests believe an escalating trade war could be economically ruinous and have been getting louder. Tory Newmyer, Washington Post, "The Finance 202: Free-trade Republican lawmakers mount revolt against Trump tariffs," 7 June 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for ruinous

Last Updated

18 May 2019

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Time Traveler for ruinous

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

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English Language Learners Definition of ruinous

: causing or likely to cause damage or destruction
: costing far too much money
chiefly British, formal : falling apart : badly damaged


ru·​in·​ous | \ ˈrü-ə-nəs How to pronounce ruinous (audio) \

Kids Definition of ruinous

: causing or likely to cause collapse or destruction a ruinous war

Other Words from ruinous

ruinously adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on ruinous

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for ruinous

Spanish Central: Translation of ruinous

Nglish: Translation of ruinous for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ruinous for Arabic Speakers

Comments on ruinous

What made you want to look up ruinous? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a sum of money that is sent as a payment

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