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[mis-kar-ij; for 1 also mis-kar-ij] /mɪsˈkær ɪdʒ; for 1 also ˈmɪsˌkær ɪdʒ/
the expulsion of a fetus before it is viable, especially between the third and seventh months of pregnancy; spontaneous abortion.
Compare abortion (def 1).
failure to attain the just, right, or desired result:
a miscarriage of justice.
failure of something sent, as a letter, to reach its destination.
Chiefly British. transportation of goods not in accordance with the contract of shipment.
Origin of miscarriage
First recorded in 1605-15; mis-1 + carriage Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for miscarriage
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • When an abortion (or miscarriage) takes place by itself, without any outside aid, we call it spontaneous abortion.

    Woman William J. Robinson
  • A blow or a fall, even a fright or shock may cause a miscarriage.

  • There have also been one child stillborn and one miscarriage.

    The Social Direction of Evolution William E. Kellicott
  • When the miscarriage cannot be prevented it is called an "Inevitable miscarriage."

  • My own belief is that he's hiding something in his sleeve, and that if he's hanged it'll be a miscarriage of justice.

    The Day of Judgment Joseph Hocking
British Dictionary definitions for miscarriage


(also) (ˈmɪskær-). spontaneous expulsion of a fetus from the womb, esp prior to the 20th week of pregnancy
an act of mismanagement or failure: a miscarriage of justice
(Brit) the failure of freight to reach its destination
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
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Word Origin and History for miscarriage

1580s, "mistake, error;" 1610s, "misbehavior;" see miscarry + -age. Meaning "untimely delivery" is from 1660s. Miscarriage of justice is from 1875.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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miscarriage in Medicine

miscarriage mis·car·riage (mĭs'kār'ĭj, mĭs-kār'-)
Premature expulsion of a nonviable fetus, especially before the middle of the second trimester of gestation; spontaneous abortion.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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miscarriage in Science
The premature, spontaneous expulsion of the products of pregnancy from the uterus, usually in the first trimester. Also called spontaneous abortion.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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miscarriage in Culture
miscarriage [(mis-kar-ij, mis-kar-ij)]

A spontaneous and premature expulsion of an embryo or fetus from the uterus before it is capable of surviving on its own.

Note: Generally, a miscarriage is a failure to achieve a desired end, as in a miscarriage of justice.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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