miasma

Definitions

  • WordNet 3.6
    • n miasma unhealthy vapors rising from the ground or other sources "the miasma of the marshes","a miasma of cigar smoke"
    • n miasma an unwholesome atmosphere "the novel spun a miasma of death and decay"
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Miasma Infectious particles or germs floating in the air; air made noxious by the presence of such particles or germs; noxious effluvia; malaria.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n miasma The emanations or effluvia arising from the ground and floating in the atmosphere, considered to be infectious or otherwise injurious to health; noxious emanations; malaria. Also called aërial poison.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Miasma mī-az′ma unwholesome exhalations arising from putrescent matter—also Mī′asm
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Quotations

  • George Steiner
    George%20Steiner
    “To many men... the miasma of peace seems more suffocating than the bracing air of war.”

Etymology

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
NL., fr. Gr. defilement, fr. to pollute
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Gr. miasmamiainein, to stain.

Usage

In literature:

Perhaps the miasma, arising from the marshes, had been the cause; but several had died, and many lay ill those sunny June days.
"Kate Danton, or, Captain Danton's Daughters" by May Agnes Fleming
And with him came the miasma of that nauseating perfume.
"Ambrotox and Limping Dick" by Oliver Fleming
And figuring thus, he falls to sleep, enveloped in a caressing miasma of almost unearthly respectability.
"Europe After 8:15" by H. L. Mencken, George Jean Nathan and Willard Huntington Wright
In other words, pytho is the miasma or mist from the evaporation of the overflow, dried up by the sun.
"Character Sketches of Romance, Fiction and the Drama" by E. Cobham Brewer
It becomes torpid and unhealthy giving out miasma and repulsive odors.
"Pushing to the Front" by Orison Swett Marden
A nature, fine enough in many ways, lay bound hand and foot, deep in miasmas and primal heat, captive to a master and consuming passion.
"The Long Roll" by Mary Johnston
No miasma arises from the marshes: no decaying vegetation poisons the virgin soil.
"The History of Tasmania , Volume II (of 2)" by John West
It was an incredible stench, an almost overpowering miasma of decay.
"But, I Don't Think" by Gordon Randall Garrett
But its effects still lingered in them, and it was all about them with its pestilential miasma.
"Expositions of Holy Scripture" by Alexander Maclaren
It was as if some miasma had risen from those damp trenches and passed into their blood.
"The Last of the Legions and Other Tales of Long Ago" by Arthur Conan Doyle
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In poetry:

Here the grey seas have drunk an azure day:
The goblin-shaped miasmas of the night
And ghostly dragons of the mist take flight
Unzoned, along a vervain-flowered way
Behind the fervent footprints of the sun.
"Dedication / To Carol" by Clark Ashton Smith

In news:

(FORTUNE Magazine) – AGRICULTURAL biotechnology is finally emerging from a miasma of wild-eyed claims and promises that have swathed it in recent years.
Then the phones started to ring (all encouraging), and I learned to work with it, as a means to escape the mundane miasma(?
Small businesses—all businesses, and consumers too, for that matter—face a miasma of threats every day.
Hopscotch Festival is one of the best and weirdest music festivals in America, bringing a roster loaded with subterranean doom metal, fiery indie rap, desolate alt-country, and sheer hellish noise miasma to downtown Raleigh, North Carolina.
As American troops withdraw from Iraq, anyone searching for rays of progress amid the country's miasma of corruption, sectarian strife, and political stalemate might look to the foothills of Sulaimaniyah, Kurdistan.
Deschutes Fresh-Hop Mirror Pond Pale Ale: Antidote to The Miasma .
The Art Basel Miami Miasma .
Mark Jackson, Hired to Rouse Knicks, Gets Sucked Into the Team's Miasma .
Deschutes Fresh-Hop Mirror Pond Pale Ale : Antidote to The Miasma.
Deschutes Fresh-Hop Mirror Pond Pale Ale: Antidote to The Miasma.
In tales of the economic miasma of the early 21st century (none but the great and powerful Krugman dare speak the D-word), the Debt-Ridden Student has become a stock character.
In this bucolic setting, the great bard's poetry and the actors' energy spin like fairy dust through the miasma of the warm night.
Amid the lingering aftereffects of the recent recession, certain savvy business owners are emerging from the miasma stronger than ever.
Taking a breather from our Gulf Coast miasma to focus on an even ghastlier blight of cultural crude washing up on American shores.
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