Try Our Apps


Avoid these words. Seriously.


or cataclysmal

[kat-uh-kliz-mik] /ˌkæt əˈklɪz mɪk/
of, relating to, or resulting from a cataclysm.
of the nature of, or having the effect of, a cataclysm:
cataclysmic changes.
Origin of cataclysmic
First recorded in 1850-55; cataclysm + -ic
Related forms
cataclysmically, adverb
noncataclysmal, adjective
noncataclysmic, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for cataclysmal
Historical Examples
  • "I'm ———," said Sir John Gotch, meditating some cataclysmal expletive.

    The Wonderful Visit Herbert George Wells
  • Lyall in England had shown that geological formations were evolutionary rather than cataclysmal.

    Browning and His Century Helen Archibald Clarke
  • It is, in fact, nothing but one cataclysmal bang and shriek of shells and shrapnel.

  • Ten seconds later this cataclysmal lunatic had reverted to sanity—a rather sheepish sanity.

  • Very rarely is there a spate, an upheaval, and a cataclysmal sweep that bursts the ice and ends its reign in an hour or two.

    Rolf In The Woods Ernest Thompson Seton
  • So the worship which many render to the unexplained, the fantastic, the cataclysmal—this is the awe that is born of ignorance.

    The Story of the Mind James Mark Baldwin
Word Origin and History for cataclysmal



1837, from cataclysm + -ic. Related: Cataclysmical (1857); cataclysmically.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for cataclysmal

Word Value for cataclysmal

Scrabble Words With Friends