distressing; severe: a terrible winter.
extremely bad; horrible: terrible coffee; a terrible movie.
exciting terror, awe, or great fear; dreadful; awful.
formidably great: a terrible responsibility.

1400–50; late Middle English < Latin terribilis, equivalent to terr(ēre) to frighten + -ibilis -ible

terribleness, noun
unterrible, adjective

3. fearful, frightful, appalling, dire, horrible, horrifying, terrifying, horrendous, horrid.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
terrible (ˈtɛrəbəl)
1.  very serious or extreme: a terrible cough
2.  informal of poor quality; unpleasant or bad: a terrible meal; a terrible play
3.  causing terror
4.  causing awe: the terrible nature of God
[C15: from Latin terribilis, from terrēre to terrify]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

early 15c., "causing terror, frightful," from O.Fr. terrible (12c.), from L. terribilis "frightful," from terrere "fill with fear," from PIE base *tres- "to tremble" (cf. Skt. trasati "trembles," Avestan tarshta "feared, revered," Gk. treëin "to tremble," Lith. triseti "to tremble," O.C.S. treso
"I shake," M.Ir. tarrach "timid"). Weakened sense of "very bad, awful" is first attested 1590s.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences for +terrible
It now dawned on the privy council that it had made a terrible mistake.
However harsh and terrible the solution, there would be no other.
That the tsar ivan the terrible to be a collation of four rulers, no less.
He died after telling mai to end the fight quickly, because war is a terrible
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