[ lee-thuh l ]
/ ˈli θəl /
of, relating to, or causing death; deadly; fatal: a lethal weapon; a lethal dose.
made or carried out to cause death: a lethal chamber; a lethal attack.
causing great harm or destruction: The disclosures were lethal to his candidacy.
Taser: A Surprising Acronym With An Unsettling StoryThe (debatable) non-lethal weapon that causes temporary paralysis was invented in the 1970s by a man named Jack Cover (who worked for NASA at one point).
Why Exposure Is Our 2014 Word Of The YearIn 2014, the Ebola virus, widespread theft of personal information, and shocking acts of violence and brutality dominated the news. Vulnerability and visibility were at the core of the year’s most notable headlines. Encapsulating those themes, Dictionary.com’s Word of the Year for 2014 is exposure. The word exposure entered English in the early 1600s to refer to a state of being without shelter or protection. …
Origin of lethal
1575–85; < Latin lētālis, equivalent to lēt(um) death + -ālis -al1; spelling (hence pronunciation) with -h- by association with Greek lḗthē oblivion
le·thal·i·ty, le·thal·ness, nounle·thal·ly, adverbhy·per·le·thal, adjectivenon·le·thal, adjective
non·le·thal·ly, adverbsem·i·le·thal, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
British Dictionary definitions for lethalness
/ (ˈliːθəl) /
able to cause or causing death
of or suggestive of death
Derived Formslethality (liːˈθælɪtɪ), nounlethally, adverb
Word Origin for lethal
C16: from Latin lēthālis, from lētum death
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
Medicine definitions for lethalness
[ lē′thəl ]
Capable of causing death.
Of, relating to, or causing death.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.