- noxious exhalations from putrescent organic matter; poisonous effluvia or germs polluting the atmosphere.
- a dangerous, foreboding, or deathlike influence or atmosphere.
Origin of miasma
Examples from the Web for miasma
The air of CGI is thick with the miasma of biz-school neologisms.Is It Over? A 2012 Clinton Global Initiative Postmortem
September 26, 2012
And I wonder if what we are looking at with the “fly by” of Minneapolis might not be a form of miasma—called boredom.The New Cockpit Threat
October 22, 2009
In the age of monarchy the king lived surrounded by a miasma of intrigue.Creative Unity
And there is no cramp in my heart, no miasma clinging to my senses.Tatterdemalion
Otherwise we run the danger of suffocation from the miasma of vulgarity.A Family of Noblemen
It was as if Black Dan had dissolved into a miasma, and floated off.Jim
Charles G. D. Roberts
It has, it is true, absorbed thousands of elements of miasma and filthiness!Travels in Central Asia
- an unwholesome or oppressive atmosphere
- pollution in the atmosphere, esp noxious vapours from decomposing organic matter
Word Origin and History for miasma
1660s, from Modern Latin miasma "noxious vapors," from Greek miasma (genitive miasmatos) "stain, pollution, defilement, taint of guilt," from stem of miainein "to pollute," from possible PIE root *mai- "to stain, soil, defile" (cf. Old English mal "stain, mark," see mole (n.1)). Earlier form was miasm (1640s), from French miasme. Related: Miasmatic; miasmal.