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From French funeste, from Latin fūnestus, from fūnus (funeral; death).



funest (comparative more funest, superlative most funest)

  1. (now rare) Causing death or disaster; fatal, catastrophic; deplorable, lamentable.
    • 1663 Sept 17th, John Evelyn in a letter to Dr. Pierce, published 1863 in Diary and correspondence of John Evelyn, F.R.S., volume 3, page 142:
      I do assure you, there is nothing I have a greater scorn and indignation against, than these wretched scoffers; and I look upon our neglect of severely punishing them as an high defect in our politics, and a forerunner of something very funest.
    • 1716 Nov 7th, quoted from 1742, probably Alexander Pope, God's Revenge Against Punning, from Miscellanies, 3rd volume, page 226:
      Scarce had this unhappy Nation recover'd these funest disasters, when the abomination of Play-houses rose up in this land: From hence hath an inundation of Obscenity flow'd from the Court and overspread the Kingdom.
    • 1854, Samuel Taylor Coleridge:
      …excepting only some Popes have be'en remarked by their own histories for funest and direful deaths.
    • 1922 (first published 1923-09-07), Wallace Stevens, Of the Manner of Addressing Clouds, from collection Harmonium:
      Funest philosophers and ponderers,
      Their evocations are the speech of clouds.
    • 1969, Vladimir Nabokov, Ada or Ardor, Penguin 2011, p. 264:
      Flora, initially an ivory-pale, dark-haired funest beauty, whom the author transformed just in time into a third bromidic dummy with a dun bun.



funest (feminine funesta, masculine plural funests or funestos, feminine plural funestes)

  1. funest