- causing or capable of causing death; mortal; deadly: a fatal accident; a fatal dose of poison.
- causing destruction, misfortune, ruin, or failure: The withdrawal of funds was fatal to the project.
- decisively important; fateful: The fatal day finally arrived.
- proceeding from or decreed by fate; inevitable: a fatal series of events.
- influencing or concerned with fate; fatalistic.
- Obsolete. doomed.
- Obsolete. prophetic.
Origin of fatal
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for fatal
Nor should we ever assume that weather alone, however extreme, should be fatal to a commercial flight.Did Bad Weather Bring Down AirAsia 8501?
December 29, 2014
Two years ago, a Party apparatchik surveyed the site of a fatal traffic accident… with a smile on his face.China’s Internet Is Freer Than You Think
December 27, 2014
They are mean, unhappy and inspired only by their fatal selfishness.Pope Francis Denounces the Vatican Elite’s 'Spiritual Alzheimer’s'
Barbie Latza Nadeau
December 23, 2014
According to a police source, that fax came in at 2:46 p.m.—literally a after before the fatal bullets flew.Alleged Cop Killer Ismaaiyl Brinsley Had a Death Wish
December 22, 2014
As I described in an article over the summer when the fatal case in China was diagnosed, plague has three distinct clinical forms.Bubonic Plague Is Back (but It Never Really Left)
November 27, 2014
It is impossible to doubt that this passion is fatal to more than the purse.
Janet, be it remembered, lacked but two years of the fatal age.Quaint Courtships
Dreaming wanes into sentimentalism, and sentimentalism is fatal to action.The Call of the Twentieth Century
David Starr Jordan
There was certainly about this man a fatal charm which concealed his vices.Night and Morning, Complete
The slave states are learning this truth by fatal experience.The Works of Whittier, Volume VII (of VII)
John Greenleaf Whittier
- resulting in or capable of causing deatha fatal accident
- bringing ruin; disastrous
- decisively important; fateful
- decreed by fate; destined; inevitable
Word Origin and History for fatal
late 14c., "decreed by fate," from Middle French fatal (14c.) and directly from Latin fatalis "ordained by fate," from fatum (see fate (n.)); sense of "causing death" is early 15c.
- Causing or capable of causing death.