[ miz-er-uh-buhl, miz-ruh- ]
/ ˈmɪz ər ə bəl, ˈmɪz rə- /


wretchedly unhappy, uneasy, or uncomfortable: miserable victims of war.
wretchedly poor; needy.
of wretched character or quality; contemptible: a miserable villain.
attended with or causing misery: a miserable existence.
manifesting misery.
worthy of pity; deplorable: a miserable failure.

Origin of miserable

1375–1425; late Middle English < Latin miserābilis, equivalent to miserā(rī) to pity (derivative of miser wretched) + -bilis -ble

SYNONYMS FOR miserable

2 destitute.
3 despicable, mean, low, abject.
6 pitiable, lamentable.


mis·er·a·ble·ness, nounmis·er·a·bly, adverbqua·si-mis·er·a·ble, adjectivequa·si-mis·er·a·bly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Examples from the Web for miserable

British Dictionary definitions for miserable

/ (ˈmɪzərəbəl, ˈmɪzrə-) /


unhappy or depressed; wretched
causing misery, discomfort, etca miserable life
contemptiblea miserable villain
sordid or squalidmiserable living conditions
Scot, Australian and NZ mean; stingy
(pejorative intensifier)you miserable wretch

Derived forms of miserable

miserableness, nounmiserably, adverb

Word Origin for miserable

C16: from Old French, from Latin miserābilis worthy of pity, from miserārī to pity, from miser wretched
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