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90s Slang You Should Know


[roo-uh-nuh s] /ˈru ə nəs/
bringing or tending to bring ruin; destructive; disastrous:
a ruinous war.
fallen into ruin; dilapidated:
a ruinous house.
consisting of ruins:
a ruinous city from antiquity.
Origin of ruinous
1350-1400; Middle English ruynouse < Latin ruīnōsus, equivalent to ruīn(a) ruin + -ōsus -ous
Related forms
ruinously, adverb
ruinousness, noun
nonruinous, adjective
nonruinously, adverb
nonruinousness, noun
unruinous, adjective
unruinously, adverb
unruinousness, noun
1. calamitous, ravaging, devastating, catastrophic. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for ruinous
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • These two items alone make it ruinous for the owners to let the building stand idle for any lengthy period.

    The Theory of the Theatre Clayton Hamilton
  • He had forgotten the ruinous condition of the Hotel de Poisson.

    Freaks of Fortune Oliver Optic
  • For unless you make it ruinous to the creditor for the credit to be given you will never stop it.

    The Law and the Poor Edward Abbott Parry
  • Was it really the truth they were following, or some false and ruinous shadow?

    The Devil's Paw E. Phillips Oppenheim
  • But the common vice of all these people is an attachment to games of chance, which they pursue with a ruinous avidity.

    Oregon and Eldorado Thomas Bulfinch
British Dictionary definitions for ruinous


causing, tending to cause, or characterized by ruin or destruction: a ruinous course of action
Derived Forms
ruinously, adverb
ruinousness, noun
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 ruinous

late 14c., "going to ruin," from Old French ruinos (Modern French ruineux) or directly from Latin ruinosus "tumbling down, going to ruin," from ruina (see ruin (n.)). Meaning "causing ruin" is from mid-15c. Related: Ruinously.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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