• WordNet 3.6
    • adj ill presaging ill fortune "ill omens","ill predictions","my words with inauspicious thunderings shook heaven"- P.B.Shelley","a dead and ominous silence prevailed","a by-election at a time highly unpropitious for the Government"
    • adj ill distressing "ill manners","of ill repute"
    • adj ill resulting in suffering or adversity "ill effects","it's an ill wind that blows no good"
    • adj ill indicating hostility or enmity "you certainly did me an ill turn","ill feelings","ill will"
    • adj ill affected by an impairment of normal physical or mental function "ill from the monotony of his suffering"
    • adv ill (`ill' is often used as a combining form) in a poor or improper or unsatisfactory manner; not well "he was ill prepared","it ill befits a man to betray old friends","the car runs badly","he performed badly on the exam","the team played poorly","ill-fitting clothes","an ill-conceived plan"
    • adv ill with difficulty or inconvenience; scarcely or hardly "we can ill afford to buy a new car just now"
    • adv ill unfavorably or with disapproval "tried not to speak ill of the dead","thought badly of him for his lack of concern"
    • n ill an often persistent bodily disorder or disease; a cause for complaining
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

It is an ill wind that blows nobody any good It is an ill wind that blows nobody any good
"'You are an ill-bred c-cad.'" "'You are an ill-bred c-cad.'"
Och, I'm gey ill Och, I'm gey ill

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: In America, the most common mental illness is Anxiety Disorders
    • Ill Contrary to good, in a moral sense; evil; wicked; wrong; iniquitious; naughtly; bad; improper. "Of his own body he was ill, and gave
      The clergy ill example."
    • Ill Contrary to good, in a physical sense; contrary or opposed to advantage, happiness, etc.; bad; evil; unfortunate; disagreeable; unfavorable. "Neither is it ill air only that maketh an ill seat, but ill ways, ill markets, and ill neighbors.""There 's some ill planet reigns."
    • adv Ill In a ill manner; badly; weakly.Ill, like above well, and so, is used before many participal adjectives, in its usual adverbal sense. When the two words are used as an epithet preceding the noun qualified they are commonly hyphened; in other cases they are written separatively; as, an ill-educated man; he was ill educated; an ill-formed plan; the plan, however ill formed, was acceptable. Ao, also, the following: ill-affected or ill affected, ill-arranged or ill arranged, ill-assorted or ill assorted, ill-boding or ill boding, ill-bred or ill bred, ill-conditioned, ill-conducted, ill-considered, ill-devised, ill-disposed, ill-doing, ill-fairing, ill-fated, ill-favored, ill-featured, ill-formed, ill-gotten, ill-imagined, ill-judged, ill-looking, ill-mannered, ill-matched, ill-meaning, ill-minded, ill-natured, ill-omened, ill-proportioned, ill-provided, ill-required, ill-sorted, ill-starred, ill-tempered, ill-timed, ill-trained, ill-used, and the like. "How ill this taper burns!""Ill fares the land, to hastening ills a prey,
      Where wealth accumulates and men decay."
    • Ill Not according with rule, fitness, or propriety; incorrect; rude; unpolished; inelegant. "That 's an ill phrase."
    • Ill Sick; indisposed; unwell; diseased; disordered; as, ill of a fever. "I am in health, I breathe, and see thee ill ."
    • Ill Whatever annoys or impairs happiness, or prevents success; evil of any kind; misfortune; calamity; disease; pain; as, the ills of humanity. "Who can all sense of others' ills escape
      Is but a brute at best in human shape."
      "That makes us rather bear those ills we have
      Than fly to others that we know not of."
    • Ill Whatever is contrary to good, in a moral sense; wickedness; depravity; iniquity; wrong; evil. "Strong virtue, like strong nature, struggles still,
      Exerts itself, and then throws off the ill ."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: Gorillas can catch human colds and other illnesses
    • ill Inherently bad or evil; of pernicious quality or character; vicious; wicked; malevolent.
    • ill Causing evil or harm; baneful; mischievous; pernicious; deleterious: as, it is an ill wind that blows nobody good.
    • ill Marked or attended by evil or suffering; disastrous; wretched; miserable: as, an ill fate; an ill ending.
    • ill Of bad import, bearing, or aspect; threatening; forbidding; harsh; inimical: as, ill news travels fast; an ill countenance.
    • ill In a bad or disordered state morally; unbalanced; cross; crabbed; unfriendly; unpropitious; hostile: as, ill nature; ill temper; ill feeling; ill will.
    • ill In a disordered state physically; diseased; impaired: as, to be ill of a fever; to be taken ill; ill health.
    • ill Not proper; not legitimate or polite; rude; unpolished: as, ill manners; ill breeding.
    • ill Unskilful; inexpert: as, I am ill at reckoning.
    • n ill Evil; wrong; wickedness; depravity.
    • n ill Misfortune; calamity; adversity; disaster; disease; pain.
    • n ill Anything that is discreditable or injurious.
    • ill Badly; imperfectly; unfavorably; unfortunately.
    • ill Not easily; with hardship, pain, or difficulty: as, he is ill able to bear the loss.
    • ill To do evil to; harm; injure.
    • ill To slander; defame.
    • n ill Abbreviations of Illinois.
    • n ill Abbreviations of illustrated or of illustration.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: There are approximately one hundred million people in the United States that have a chronic illness
    • adj Ill il (comp. worse; superl. worst) evil, bad: contrary to good: wicked: producing evil: unfortunate: unfavourable: sick: diseased: improper: incorrect: cross, as temper
    • adv Ill not well: not rightly: with difficulty—(rare) Ill′y
    • n Ill evil: wickedness: misfortune
    • Ill Ill, when compounded with other words, expresses badness of quality or condition, as 'ill-advised,' 'ill-affected,' 'ill-disposed,' &c
    • ***


  • Alexander Hamilton
    “We must make the best of those ills which cannot be avoided.”
  • Charles Caleb Colton
    “There are three modes of bearing the ills of life, by indifference, by philosophy, and by religion.”
  • (Decimus Junius Juvenalis) Juvenal
    (Decimus Junius Juvenalis) Juvenal
    “How incessant and great are the ills with which a prolonged old age is replete.”
  • Moliere
    “Books and marriage go ill together.”
  • Edward G. Bulwer-Lytton
    “Refuse to be ill. Never tell people you are ill; never own it to yourself. Illness is one of those things which a man should resist on principle at the onset.”
  • Samuel Butler
    “I reckon being ill as one of the great pleasures of life, provided one is not too ill and is not obliged to work till one is better.”


Ill at ease - If someone is ill at ease, they are worried or uncomfortable.
Ill-gotten gains - Ill-gotten gains are profits or benefits that are made either illegally or unfairly.
It's an ill wind that blows no good - This is said when things have gone wrong; the idea being that when bad things happen, there can also be some positive results.


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
OE. ill, ille, Icel. illr,; akin to Sw. illa, adv., Dan. ilde, adv


In literature:

Our good is less good when it is abrupt, rude, ill timed, or ill placed.
"Pushing to the Front" by Orison Swett Marden
Ill as he was, he started up and rushed to the camp.
"Great African Travellers" by W.H.G. Kingston
Further than that, I have no feeling of ill-will against you, or any of those connected with you.
"Salt Water" by W. H. G. Kingston
I begged him, however, not to venture out if he was still ill.
"My First Voyage to Southern Seas" by W.H.G. Kingston
Good air is important in this, as in all cases of ill-health.
"Papers on Health" by John Kirk
Surely no well-wisher so sincere as the average parent ever ill-treated his charge so preposterously.
"The Daughters of Danaus" by Mona Caird
Yet perhaps there was illness inside the house and she had been sent for to give aid.
"The Red Cross Girls with the Russian Army" by Margaret Vandercook
No sooner was my father returned home, than he became violently ill. My mother was at the same time indisposed in another part of the house.
"The Autobiography of Madame Guyon" by Jeanne Marie Bouvier de La Motte Guyon
That man's unwise will search for ill, And may prevent it, sitting still.
"The Hesperides & Noble Numbers: Vol. 1 and 2" by Robert Herrick
They are bad now because they are ill.
"Across Unknown South America" by Arnold Henry Savage Landor

In poetry:

Remembering ills, though slight
Yet irremediable,
Brings a worse, an impurer pang
Than remembering what was well.
"Home 1" by Edward Thomas
What if that star, as a pin,
Suddenly I’ll pierce my heart?
That one, which shimmering spins
Over the shop apart?
""I often shiver with cold"" by Osip Emilevich Mandelstam
She shroudeth vice in virtue's veil,
Pretending good in ill
She offereth joy, affordeth grief,
A kiss where she doth kill.
"Love's Servile Lot" by Robert Southwell
Says he, "I’ll tie this vessel up
And rest about a week;
I need a rest," and ‘t was just then
He heard an awful shriek.
"The Tearful Tale Of Captain Dan" by Ellis Parker Butler
I fear no ill, resent no wrong;
Nor feel a passion move,
When malice whets her slanderous tongue;
Such patience is in love.
"Love Increased" by William Cowper
Lest that he take any ill.
Still the Mighty Lover goes,
Seeks the beloved o'er many a hill.
Be at rest, dear child! He knows!
"Missing" by Katharine Tynan

In news:

An ill puppy found along Interstate 81 soon won over his new owner.
NBC dumping Ann Curry from Today seemed like both calculated assassination and bizarrely ill-timed roll of the dice.
After all, no human illness has been linked to the jarred products with yummy-sounding names.
Veteran defense attorney Brian Silverman of Champaign died in a Springfield hospital after a lengthy illness related to muscular dystrophy.
Peabody — Manuel R Brasil , 86, of Peabody, died Sunday afternoon at Salem Hospital following a brief illness.
The next two seminars are scheduled for July 26-28, 2011, at the Sheraton Chicago O'Hare Airport, Rosemont, Ill.
The Enterprise-Journal reports Indeck Energy Services of Buffalo Grove, Ill.
Every year about 1,000 homicides are committed by people who are mentally ill and not in treatment.
Park Ridge, Ill.—There are myriad benefits associated with breastfeeding an infant, but when a mother is faced with surgery should the breastfeeding stop.
Too Much Illness and Death.
CHARM Bree Noelle Grossi, the daughter of Paul and Miriam Grossi of Charm, and Henry Brecher Alexander Wilde, the son of Harold and Benna Wilde of Naperville, Ill.
Think that turkey sandwich you packed for your kid's lunch will be at a safe temperature -- safe and sound from food-borne illness -- when they sit down to eat it.
The bridge carrying Deerpath Road traffic over the Reagan Memorial Tollway (I-88) in Aurora, Ill.
While I was out ill for six weeks in December and January, the world changed.
In this image provided by Brian Buckland, 138 skydivers form a massive snowflake formation Friday, Aug 3, 2012 over Ottawa, Ill.

In science:

In the magnetic field, the phase of the wave function is ill-defined because of the gauge freedom.
Paraxial propagation of a quantum charge in a random magnetic field
For p ◦ p = 0, the S-matrix does not suffer from lack of unitarity, but is ill-defined because of infrared divergences. p ◦ p = 0 is possible whether the noncommutativity is space-time or space-space.
Space-Time Noncommutative Field Theories And Unitarity
D-branes with given topological charges (although a notion of individual D-brane is ill-defined in noncommutative space).
Gauge theories on noncommutative spaces
Clearly a transformation relating these two metrics cannot even be continuous, hence in addition to involving ill-defined products of distributions it changes the topological structure of the manifold.
Nonlinear distributional geometry and general relativity
In this example this is the case and no evidence for ill-posedness is obtained.
Applications of the theory of evolution equations to general relativity