• WordNet 3.6
    • n disaster an act that has disastrous consequences
    • n disaster an event resulting in great loss and misfortune "the whole city was affected by the irremediable calamity","the earthquake was a disaster"
    • n disaster a state of extreme (usually irremediable) ruin and misfortune "lack of funds has resulted in a catastrophe for our school system","his policies were a disaster"
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

The Ghostly Ally of Disaster The Ghostly Ally of Disaster

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Annually, fires that occur at home kill more Americans than all natural disasters combined
    • Disaster An adverse or unfortunate event, esp. a sudden and extraordinary misfortune; a calamity; a serious mishap. "But noble souls, through dust and heat,
      Rise from disaster and defeat
      The stronger."
    • Disaster An unpropitious or baleful aspect of a planet or star; malevolent influence of a heavenly body; hence, an ill portent. "Disasters in the sun."
    • Disaster To blast by the influence of a baleful star.
    • Disaster To bring harm upon; to injure.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: In December 1997, the state of Nevada (USA) became the first state to pass legislation categorizing Y2K data disasters as "acts of God"— protecting the state from lawsuits that may potentially be brought against it by residents in the year 2000.
    • n disaster An unfavorable aspect of a star or planet; an ill portent; a blast or stroke of an unfavorable planet.
    • n disaster Misfortune; mishap; calamity; any unfortunate event; especially, a sudden or great misfortune: a word used with much latitude, but most appropriately for some unforeseen event of a very distressing or overwhelming nature.
    • n disaster Synonyms Calamity, Catastrophe, etc. (see misfortune); blow, stroke, reverse.
    • disaster To blast by the stroke of an unlucky planet. Spenser.
    • disaster To injure; afflict.
    • disaster To blemish; disfigure.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Disaster diz-as′tėr an adverse or unfortunate event: a great and sudden misfortune: calamity
    • ***


  • Maurice Maeterlinck
    Maurice Maeterlinck
    “Many a happiness in life, as many a disaster, can be due to chance, but the peace within us can never be governed by chance.”
  • Andrew William Mellon
    Andrew William Mellon
    “A nation is not in danger of financial disaster merely because it owes itself money.”
  • Wallace Rice
    Wallace Rice
    “Hope, the patent medicine for disease, disaster, sin.”
  • Elisabeth Bishop
    Elisabeth Bishop
    “The art of losing isn't hard to master; so many things seem filled with the intent to be lost that their loss is no disaster.”
  • William Bridges
    William Bridges
    “Much as we may wish to make a new beginning, some part of us resists doing so as though we were making the first step toward disaster.”
  • John D. Rockefeller
    “I always tried to turn every disaster into an opportunity.”


Recipe for disaster - A recipe for disaster is a mixture of people and events that could only possibly result in trouble.


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
F. désastre,; pref. dés-,L. dis-,) + astre, star, fr. L. astrum,; a word of astrological origin. See Aster Astral Star
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
O. Fr. desastre, des—L. dis, with evil sense, astre—L. astrum, a star, destiny.


In literature:

The party of Putnam, enraged by this disaster, fought with gallantry, and inflicted a heavy loss upon their opponents.
"Great Men and Famous Women. Vol. 2 of 8" by Various
Cloud, near Paris, when the news of this disaster arrived.
"The Life of Napoleon Bonaparte" by William Milligan Sloane
The Bureaux did not last, and their disappearance was a disaster.
"Lectures on the French Revolution" by John Emerich Edward Dalberg-Acton
From such disasters as a rule, greatly to be regretted though they were, the industry emerged so much the wiser.
"Learning to Fly" by Claude Grahame-White
The disaster overtook Johnstown about six o'clock last evening.
"The Johnstown Horror" by James Herbert Walker
He was threatened with disaster, and as yet he was unable to see clearly any way out.
"Making People Happy" by Thompson Buchanan
Horrible was the disaster, because neither the brothers nor the sisters of Noah were saved.
"Commentary on Genesis, Vol. II" by Martin Luther
It will end in disaster.
"Robert Orange" by John Oliver Hobbes
Disasters to the airships of Severo and Bradsky.
"The War in the Air; Vol. 1" by Walter Raleigh
Besides, it was Sunday, and on the first day of the week she almost always escaped disaster.
"'Lizbeth of the Dale" by Marian Keith

In poetry:

Each Sunday and each feast as well,
His late disaster heeds he;
The moment that he bears the bell,
No other summons needs he.
"The Walking Bell" by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
When LIFE'S disast'rous scene is fled,
This humble boon I crave;
Oh! bind your branches round my head,
"To the Myrtle" by Mary Darby Robinson
'Ah — had you a male friend once loved well,
Upon whose suit disaster fell
And frustrance swift?
Honest you are, and may care to tell.'
"A Conversation At Dawn" by Thomas Hardy
I have dared and reached only disaster,
I have battled and broken my lance;
I am bruised by a pitiless master
That the weak and the timid call Chance.
"Unsubdued" by Samuel Ellsworth Kiser
So the shepherd ran home and told his master
About the very sad disaster;
That he had found a dead body in the snow,
But whose it was he did not know.
"The Death of the Old Mendicant" by William Topaz McGonagall
While ye scorn our names unspoken,
Roses dead and garlands broken,
O ye wise,
We arise,
Out of failures, dreams, disasters,
We arise to be your masters.
"Gaudeamus Igitur" by Margaret Louisa Woods

In news:

Pakistan flood disaster may destabilize nation.
The best way to avoid a 'sexting' disaster is to not take any potentially embarrassing photos of yourself that may find their way into the wild.
Monsoon season combined with typhoon season has wrought disaster throughout Asia, from Korea and Japan, south through the Philippines, Vietnam and Cambodia.
This novel from Suri (The Death of Vishnu) shows India and, peripherally, the rest of the world, teetering on the edge of disaster.
If you don't plan properly, logistics costs can spiral, leading to an end-of-fiscal-year disaster.
Diagramming the Costa Concordia Disaster.
After studying ancient rocks, a Japanese geologist warned that a disaster was imminent—to no avail.
Order a pizza at Tutta Bella Neapolitan Pizzeria, 715 N W. Gilman Blvd, and assist disaster-relief efforts in Japan at the same time.
Don comes through pretty well, but Lina's voice is a harsh, squeaking disaster that threatens to sink the studio.
The United States Department of Agriculture has designated most counties in the state of Illinois as disaster area s.
Send "Chase County declared disaster area by USDA" to a friend.
Send "Will Reading be considered a disaster area ".
USDA has designated California's Imperial County as a primary natural disaster area due to damages and losses caused by flooding associated with monsoonal thunderstorms from July 13.
Nearly 30 counties in New York State have been declared disaster area s because of crop damages and losses from this summer's drought.
According to the US Department of Agriculture, Oneida, Madison, and Lewis counties were among the 29 primary disaster area s listed.

In science:

It will not prevent attacks on the physical layer where sabotage and natural disasters can occur.
Will the Butterfly Cipher keep your Network Data secure? Developments in Computer Encryption
It is revealed that those particles may cause disaster for conventional cosmological scenario.
Late-time Affleck-Dine baryogenesis after thermal inflation
In order to avoid this disaster, the abundance of the garvitinos should be small enough.
Late-time Affleck-Dine baryogenesis after thermal inflation
Vicsek, Crowd Disasters and Simulation of Panic Situations in A.
Around the gap between sociophysics and sociology
Enterprise Spreadsheet Management provides a technological solution to the problem, enabling organisations to wrap a monitoring environment around this asset base establishing a basis for all the standard IT policies such as security, change control, disaster recovery and data management.
Enterprise Spreadsheet Management: A Necessary Good