Synonym Chooser

How does the noun misfortune differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of misfortune are adversity, mischance, and mishap. While all these words 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

When might adversity be a better fit than misfortune?

The words adversity and misfortune are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, adversity applies to a state of grave or persistent misfortune.

had never experienced great adversity

When could mischance be used to replace misfortune?

Although the words mischance and misfortune have much in common, mischance applies especially to a situation involving no more than slight inconvenience or minor annoyance.

took the wrong road by mischance

When can mishap be used instead of misfortune?

While the synonyms mishap and misfortune are close in meaning, mishap applies to an often trivial instance of bad luck.

the usual mishaps of a family vacation

Thesaurus Entries Near misfortune

Cite this Entry

“Misfortune.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/misfortune. Accessed 8 Dec. 2023.

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