predicament

[ pri-dik-uh-muh nt for 1, 3; pred-i-kuh-muh nt for 2 ]
/ prɪˈdɪk ə mənt for 1, 3; ˈprɛd ɪ kə mənt for 2 /

noun

an unpleasantly difficult, perplexing, or dangerous situation.
a class or category of logical or philosophical predication.
Archaic. a particular state, condition, or situation.

Origin of predicament

1350–1400; 1580–90 for def 1; Middle English < Late Latin praedicāmentum something predicated, asserted, derivative of praedicāre. See predicate, -ment

SYNONYMS FOR predicament

1 Predicament, dilemma, plight, quandary refer to unpleasant or puzzling situations. Predicament and plight stress more the unpleasant nature, quandary and dilemma the puzzling nature of the situation. Predicament and plight are sometimes interchangeable; plight, however, though originally meaning peril or danger, is seldom used today except laughingly: When his suit wasn't ready at the cleaners, he was in a terrible plight. Predicament, though likewise capable of being used lightly, may also refer to a really crucial situation: Stranded in a strange city without money, he was in a predicament. Dilemma, in popular use, means a position of doubt or perplexity in which one is faced by two equally undesirable alternatives: the dilemma of a hostess who must choose between offending her anti-drinking guests or disappointing those who expected cocktails. Quandary is the state of mental perplexity of one faced with a difficult situation: There seemed to be no way out of the quandary.

Related forms

pre·dic·a·men·tal [pri-dik-uh-men-tl, pred-i-kuh-] /prɪˌdɪk əˈmɛn tl, ˌprɛd ɪ kə-/, adjectivepre·dic·a·men·tal·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for predicament

British Dictionary definitions for predicament

predicament

/ (prɪˈdɪkəmənt) /

noun

a perplexing, embarrassing, or difficult situation
(ˈprɛdɪkəmənt) logic obsolete one of Aristotle's ten categories of being
archaic a specific condition, circumstance, state, position, etc

Word Origin for predicament

C14: from Late Latin praedicāmentum what is predicated, from praedicāre to announce, assert; see predicate
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