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horrible

[hawr-uh-buh l, hor-]
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adjective
  1. causing or tending to cause horror; shockingly dreadful: a horrible sight.
  2. extremely unpleasant; deplorable; disgusting: horrible living conditions.

Origin of horrible

1275–1325; Middle English (h)orrible < Old French < Latin horribilis, equivalent to horr- (stem of horrēre to stand on end, bristle with fear) + -ibilis -ible
Related formshor·ri·ble·ness, nounhor·ri·bly, adverb

Synonyms

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1. terrible, awful, appalling, frightful; hideous, grim, ghastly, shocking, revolting, repulsive, horrid, horrendous, horrifying, repellent.

Antonyms

1. attractive.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for horrible

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Robert was fully aware that he was exposing himself to a horrible death.

    Brave and Bold

    Horatio Alger

  • Some horrible accident might happen to delay us here thirty minutes.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • "Let us face this horrible night as best we can," said Austin.

    Viviette

    William J. Locke

  • The horrible stiffness was somewhat broken, and all were seated.

  • It was horrible to think of her going into such abominable places—and all alone too!

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald


British Dictionary definitions for horrible

horrible

adjective
  1. causing horror; dreadful
  2. disagreeable; unpleasant
  3. informal cruel or unkind
Derived Formshorribleness, noun

Word Origin

C14: via Old French from Latin horribilis, from horrēre to tremble
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for horrible

adj.

c.1300, from Old French horrible, orrible (12c.) "horrible, repugnant, terrifying," from Latin horribilis "terrible, fearful, dreadful," from horrere "to bristle with fear, shudder" (see horror). Used as a mere intensifier from mid-15c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper