Dictionary.com
definitions
  • synonyms

misery

[miz-uh-ree]
See more synonyms for misery on Thesaurus.com
noun, plural mis·er·ies.
  1. wretchedness of condition or circumstances.
  2. distress or suffering caused by need, privation, or poverty.
  3. great mental or emotional distress; extreme unhappiness.
  4. a cause or source of distress.
  5. Older Use.
    1. a pain: a misery in my left side.
    2. rheumatism.
    3. Often miseries.a case or period of despondency or gloom.
Show More

Origin of misery

1325–75; Middle English miserie < Latin miseria, equivalent to miser wretched + -ia -y3

Synonyms

See more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com

Antonyms

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

heartache, gloom, hardship, torture, agony, sorrow, discomfort, grief, squalor, suffering, despair, torment, woe, passion, anguish, sadness, worry, headache, misfortune, anxiety

Examples from the Web for misery

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • And let it be considered, what misery to me, Madam, if I marry that hated Solmes!

    Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9)

    Samuel Richardson

  • And what I overheard in the armoury--about a telegram--telling me--putting me out of my misery?

    Viviette

    William J. Locke

  • But she had not so much share in her own cheerfulness as her poor aunts had in their misery.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • In the selfishness of his misery he looked upon this as lack of sympathy with himself.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • Now, she was sunken in an apathy that saved her from the worst pangs of misery.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana


British Dictionary definitions for misery

misery

noun plural -eries
  1. intense unhappiness, discomfort, or suffering; wretchedness
  2. a cause of such unhappiness, discomfort, etc
  3. squalid or poverty-stricken conditions
  4. British informal a person who is habitually depressedhe is such a misery
  5. dialect a pain or ailment
Show More

Word Origin

C14: via Anglo-Norman from Latin miseria, 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

Word Origin and History for misery

n.

late 14c., "condition of external unhappiness," from Old French misere "miserable situation, misfortune, distress" (12c.), from Latin miseria "wretchedness," from miser (see miser). Meaning "condition of one in great sorrow or mental distress" is from 1530s. Meaning "bodily pain" is 1825, American English.

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with misery

misery

In addition to the idiom beginning with misery

  • misery loves company

also see:

  • put someone out of his or her misery
Show More
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.