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 misfortunes

Contemporary Examples of misfortunes

Historical Examples of misfortunes

  • Pericles has borne all his misfortunes with the dignity of an immortal.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • Festivals in honour of Zeus, because he delivered men from misfortunes and dangers.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • I, to her misfortunes—she through the brutality of the king.

    Theresa Marchmont

    Mrs Charles Gore

  • The principal pleasure of your life is to remind your family of their misfortunes.

    Little Dorrit

    Charles Dickens

  • All kinds of misfortunes, accidents, and storms had been its lot.

    My Double Life

    Sarah Bernhardt

British Dictionary definitions for misfortunes



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 misfortunes



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

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper