- terrifick (obsolete)
- (colloquial) Frighteningly good.
- I say! She's a terrific tennis player.
- (colloquial) Astounding or awesome.
- The car came round the bend at a terrific speed.
- (dated) Terrifying; causing terror.
- The lightning was followed by a terrific clap of thunder.
- 1821, Charles Maturin, Melmoth the Wanderer, volume 2, page 154:
- Think of wandering amid sepulchral ruins, of stumbling over the bones of the dead, of encountering what I cannot describe,—the horror of being among those who are neither the living or the dead;—those dark and shadowless things that sport themselves with the reliques of the dead, and feast and love amid corruption,—ghastly, mocking, and terrific.
- 1860, Charles Dickens, Captain Murderer
- He made love in a coach and six, and married in a coach and twelve, and all his horses were milk-white horses with one red spot on the back which he caused to be hidden by the harness. For, the spot would come there, though every horse was milk-white when Captain Murderer bought him. And the spot was young bride's blood. (To this terrific point I am indebted for my first personal experience of a shudder and cold beads on the forehead.)
- Frightful or very unpleasant.
- I've got a terrific hangover this morning.
- (colloquial) Extraordinarily great or intense.
- terrific speed
- 1769, Joseph Collyer, transl., The Messiah. Attempted from the German of Mr. Klopstock, 4th edition, page 280:
- The heavenly orbs heard the commanding voice reverbate from the mountains of Adamida. The ſtar tremulous turn'd its thundering poles, and the whole creation reſounded; when, with terrific haſte, Adamida, in obediance to the divine command, flew amidſt overwhelming ſtorms, ruſhing clouds, falling mountains, and ſwelling ſeas.
great or intense
frightful or very unpleasant
- terrific in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.
- terrific in The Century Dictionary, The Century Co., New York, 1911