- any building, structure, or thing reduced to a state of ruin.
- wreckage, goods, etc., remaining above water after a shipwreck, especially when cast ashore.
- the ruin or destruction of a vessel in the course of navigation; shipwreck.
- a vessel in a state of ruin from disaster at sea, on rocks, etc.
- the ruin or destruction of anything: the wreck of one's hopes.
- a person of ruined health; someone in bad shape physically or mentally: The strain of his work left him a wreck.
- to cause the wreck of (a vessel); shipwreck.
- to involve in a wreck.
- to cause the ruin or destruction of: to wreck a car.
- to tear down; demolish: to wreck a building.
- to ruin or impair severely: Fast living wrecked their health.
Origin of wreck
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for wreck
None of this is to say that the wreck and salvage of the Costa Concordia should have received less attention.
It was a negligent accident that cost more than 30 lives, including a salvage diver who perished working on the wreck.
In the case of Flight 17 the wreck is already yielding a lot of information.MH17 Is the World’s First Open-Source Air Crash Investigation
July 22, 2014
They finally made it to the rocks off the island near the wreck, where they waited until rescue workers and islanders found them.I Survived a Deadly Shipwreck: Costa Concordia Passengers Tell Their Stories
Barbie Latza Nadeau
May 19, 2014
The result of this wreck was 86 people dead and over 200 injuries.Thrills and Too Many Spills: The Dangers of the Circus
May 5, 2014
There were so many ways in which the wreck might have gone out of life and left no sign.Ester Ried Yet Speaking
As was said, the only soul who escaped alive off the wreck was Tom Chist.Howard Pyle's Book of Pirates
On inquiry, he learned that it had come from a wreck in which there were several ladies.Georgie's Present
And the battles which wreck ministers are waged round his name.The Three Cities Trilogy, Complete
His first step was to restore discipline in the Chapter, which had all gone to wreck.Albert Durer
T. Sturge Moore
- to involve in or suffer disaster or destruction
- (tr) to cause the wreck of (a ship)
- the accidental destruction of a ship at sea
- the ship so destroyed
- maritime law goods cast ashore from a wrecked vessel
- a person or thing that has suffered ruin or dilapidation
- the remains of something that has been destroyed
- old-fashioned the act of wrecking or the state of being wrecked; ruin or destruction
Word Origin and History for wreck
early 13c., "goods cast ashore after a shipwreck, flotsam," from Anglo-French wrec, from Old Norse *wrek (cf. Norwegian, Icelandic rek) "wreck, flotsam," related to reka "to drive, push" (see wreak). The meaning "a shipwreck" is first recorded mid-15c.; that of "a wrecked ship" is from c.1500. General sense of "remains of anything that has been ruined" is recorded from 1713; applied by 1795 to dissipated persons.
"to destroy, ruin," c.1500, from wreck (n.). Related: Wrecked; wrecking. Earlier (12c.) it meant "drive out or away, remove;" also "take vengeance."