miserable

See also: misérable

EnglishEdit

EtymologyEdit

Borrowed from Middle French miserable, from Old French, from Latin miserabilis.

PronunciationEdit

  • IPA(key): /ˈmɪz(ə)ɹəbəl/
  • (file)

AdjectiveEdit

miserable (comparative miserabler or more miserable, superlative miserablest or most miserable)

  1. In a state of misery: very sad, ill, or poor.
    • 1913, Mrs. [Marie] Belloc Lowndes, chapter I, in The Lodger, London: Methuen, →OCLC; republished in Novels of Mystery: The Lodger; The Story of Ivy; What Really Happened, New York, N.Y.: Longmans, Green and Co., [], [1933], →OCLC, page 0056:
      Thanks to that penny he had just spent so recklessly [on a newspaper] he would pass a happy hour, taken, for once, out of his anxious, despondent, miserable self. It irritated him shrewdly to know that these moments of respite from carking care would not be shared with his poor wife, with careworn, troubled Ellen.
    • 1918, W[illiam] B[abington] Maxwell, chapter VII, in The Mirror and the Lamp, Indianapolis, Ind.: The Bobbs-Merrill Company, →OCLC:
      With some of it on the south and more of it on the north of the great main thoroughfare that connects Aldgate and the East India Docks, St. Bede's at this period of its history was perhaps the poorest and most miserable parish in the East End of London.
    • 1910, George Bernard Shaw, A Treatise on Parents and Children[1]:
      The secret of being miserable is to have leisure to bother about whether you are happy or not. The cure for it is occupation, because occupation means pre-occupation
  2. Very bad (at something); unskilled, incompetent; hopeless.
    He's good at some sports, like tennis, but he's just miserable at football.
  3. Of the weather, extremely unpleasant due to being cold, wet, overcast, etc.
  4. Wretched; worthless; mean; contemptible.
    a miserable sinner
  5. (obsolete) Causing unhappiness or misery.
  6. (obsolete) Avaricious; niggardly; miserly.
    • 1594–1597, Richard Hooker, J[ohn] S[penser], editor, Of the Lawes of Ecclesiastical Politie, [], London: [] Will[iam] Stansby [for Matthew Lownes], published 1611, →OCLC, (please specify the page):
      the liberal-hearted man is by the opinion of the prodigal miserable, and by the judgment of the miserable lavish

SynonymsEdit

Derived termsEdit

Related termsEdit

CollocationsEdit

TranslationsEdit

NounEdit

miserable (plural miserables)

  1. A miserable person; a wretch.
    • 1838, The Foreign Quarterly Review, volume 21, page 181:
      Dona Carmen repaired to the balcony to chat and jest with, and at, these miserables, who stopped before the door to rest in their progress. All pretended poverty while literally groaning under the weight of their riches.
    • 2003, Richard C. Trexler, Reliving Golgotha: The Passion Play of Iztapalapa, pages 46-47:
      The charge that those who played Jesus in these representations were treated badly by the plays' Jews and Romans left one commissioner cold: in his view, these miserables were beaten much less severely by the players than they were by their actual lords or curacas.
  2. (informal, in the plural, with definite article) A state of misery or melancholy.
    • 1984, Barbara Wernecke Durkin, Oh, You Dundalk Girls, Can't You Dance the Polka?, page 10:
      By 3:00 P.M. both DeeDee and Sandra's pants were thoroughly soaked, and this unhappy circumstance gave DeeDee a bad case of the miserables.

AnagramsEdit

CatalanEdit

EtymologyEdit

Learned borrowing from Latin miserābilis.

PronunciationEdit

AdjectiveEdit

miserable m or f (masculine and feminine plural miserables)

  1. miserable

GermanEdit

AdjectiveEdit

miserable

  1. inflection of miserabel:
    1. strong/mixed nominative/accusative feminine singular
    2. strong nominative/accusative plural
    3. weak nominative all-gender singular
    4. weak accusative feminine/neuter singular

SpanishEdit

EtymologyEdit

Learned borrowing from Latin miserābilis.

PronunciationEdit

  • IPA(key): /miseˈɾable/ [mi.seˈɾa.β̞le]
  • Rhymes: -able
  • Syllabification: mi‧se‧ra‧ble

AdjectiveEdit

miserable (plural miserables)

  1. miserable
  2. poor
  3. greedy, stingy

Derived termsEdit

Related termsEdit

Further readingEdit