- causing or involving great fear or suffering; dreadful; terrible: a dire calamity.
- indicating trouble, disaster, misfortune, or the like: dire predictions about the stock market.
- urgent; desperate: in dire need of food.
Origin of dire
Examples from the Web for dire
So, what happens if nothing in his training has replicated such a dire condition?Flight 8501 Poses Question: Are Modern Jets Too Automated to Fly?
January 4, 2015
“Driving on both sides, getting around cars, letting them know I was in a dire emergency,” Johnson says.'Please Don't Die!': The Frantic Battle to Save Murdered Cops
December 22, 2014
Kim Jung-un clearly recognizes that Hollywood and American popular culture in general constitute a dire threat.Inside the ‘Surprisingly Great’ North Korean Hacker Hotel
December 20, 2014
The results of that rash decision, the most dire of which has been the rise of ISIS, are now plain for us to see.‘America in Retreat’: Why Neo-Isolationism Exploded Under Obama and What We Can Do About It
December 1, 2014
The dire fatalism that dominated the discourse then is gone, replaced largely with a practiced apathy.Heart of Darkness: Into Afghanistan’s Taliban Valley
Matt Trevithick, Daniel Seckman
November 15, 2014
To have married a girl who cared only for his money; that would have been dire enough.
The present, so, was more than any possible future, how dire soever it might be.
We cheered, thinking some dire calamity had befallen the enemy.Ned Myers
James Fenimore Cooper
In fact, no word except that of dire disaster had come to hand.Welsh Fairy Tales
William Elliott Griffis
But it is a dire necessity, and it is impossible to avoid or to turn it.Diary from November 12, 1862, to October 18, 1863
- Also: direful disastrous; fearful
- desperate; urgenta dire need
- foreboding disaster; ominousa dire warning
Word Origin and History for dire
1560s, from Latin dirus "fearful, awful, boding ill," of unknown origin; perhaps from Oscan and Umbrian and perhaps cognate with Greek deinos, from PIE root *dwei-.