[dih-zas-truh s, -zah-struh s]


causing great distress or injury; ruinous; very unfortunate; calamitous: The rain and cold proved disastrous to his health.
Archaic. foreboding disaster.

Origin of disastrous

1580–90; < Middle French desastreux, Italian disastroso. See disaster, -ous
Related formsdis·as·trous·ly, adverbdis·as·trous·ness, nounnon·dis·as·trous, adjectivenon·dis·as·trous·ly, adverbnon·dis·as·trous·ness, nounpre·dis·as·trous, adjectivepre·dis·as·trous·ly, adverbqua·si-dis·as·trous, adjectivequa·si-dis·as·trous·ly, adverbun·dis·as·trous, adjectiveun·dis·as·trous·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for disastrous

Contemporary Examples of disastrous

Historical Examples of disastrous

  • The battle was disastrous for the Egyptians and the valley of the Nile was open to the invaders.

    Ancient Man

    Hendrik Willem van Loon

  • Was ever a man placed, he thought, in a position so inextricable, so disastrous?


    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • It is natural to goodness and innocence, but not the less is the error a disastrous one.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • Do not let this great and disastrous fall sink you into lower depths of sin.

    Life in London

    Edwin Hodder

  • Crane's racing season had been as successful as the Master of Ringwood's had been disastrous.


    W. A. Fraser

Word Origin and History for disastrous

1580s, "ill-starred," from French désastreux (16c.), from désastre (see disaster) or from Italian desastroso. Meaning "calamitous" is from c.1600. Related: Disastrously.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper