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Definition of "catastrophe" []

  • A great, often sudden calamity. (noun)
  • A complete failure; a fiasco: The food was cold, the guests quarreled—the whole dinner was a catastrophe. (noun)
  • The concluding action of a drama, especially a classical tragedy, following the climax and containing a resolution of the plot. (noun)
  • A sudden violent change in the earth's surface; a cataclysm. (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "catastrophe" in a sentence
  • "He said the protesters wanted "to undermine the existence of the State of Israel—what they call the catastrophe that needs to be corrected.""
  • "Sarkozy told reporters the images of the disaster have stirred great emotions in France and said his government is prepared to send teams of aid workers to help in what he called a catastrophe that apparently is without precedent."
  • "The nature of this catastrophe is always vague, but usually begins with homelessness, then explores the nether regions of destitution."