- 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
Related Words for direstacute, extreme, critical, desperate, drastic, distressing, dreadful, disastrous, alarming, calamitous, horrible, appalling, depressing, ugly, cataclysmic, gloomy, dismal, unfortunate, catastrophic, awful
Examples from the Web for direst
Contemporary Examples of direst
Keep in mind that for him, safety means fewer innocents in direst danger.Ray Kelly Has to Run for New York City Mayor. How Could He Not?
June 4, 2013
He found the rest to be dedicated and ever ready to race into direst danger for the sake of complete strangers.NYPD Scandals Obscure the Decency of the Majority, Cops Say
November 11, 2011
With a job approval rating of 51 percent according to Gallup, President Obama is not in the direst political shape.Be More Like Teddy
August 26, 2009
And this time, the United States refrained from making the direst of unkeepable threats.Not So Fast, Kim
Leslie H. Gelb
May 26, 2009
Historical Examples of direst
She looked like a culprit whom direst vengeance had overtaken at last.Meadow Grass
Then there happened that which fulfilled my direst premonitions.Ruggles of Red Gap
Harry Leon Wilson
No person, even in the direst straits, is anxious to incur a violent death.The Fiery Totem
Remember that the neglect of justice brings with it the direst retribution.
India, with poverty, is the direst of all penal settlements.A Rent In A Cloud
Charles James Lever
- Also: direful disastrous; fearful
- desperate; urgenta dire need
- foreboding disaster; ominousa dire warning
Word Origin 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-.