adverse fortune; bad luck.
an instance of this; mischance; mishap.

Origin of misfortune

1400–50; late Middle English. See mis-1, fortune

Synonyms for misfortune

Synonym study

2. See affliction.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for misfortune

Contemporary Examples of misfortune

Historical Examples of misfortune

  • I like him all the better for his misfortune, and so I am sure will my sister.

    Brave and Bold

    Horatio Alger

  • The misfortune was that this was the only thing they cared to possess.


    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • It was quite possible that some misfortune might have happened.


    William J. Locke

  • Misfortune had driven them into the earth; it would be fortune to stay there.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • Brother, you'll be the cause that some misfortune will happen here.

British Dictionary definitions for misfortune



evil fortune; bad luck
an unfortunate or disastrous event; calamity
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 misfortune

mid-15c., from mis- (1) + fortune. Related: Misfortunate.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper