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crisis

[krahy-sis] /ˈkraɪ sɪs/
noun, plural crises
[krahy-seez] /ˈkraɪ siz/ (Show IPA)
1.
a stage in a sequence of events at which the trend of all future events, especially for better or for worse, is determined; turning point.
2.
a condition of instability or danger, as in social, economic, political, or international affairs, leading to a decisive change.
3.
a dramatic emotional or circumstantial upheaval in a person's life.
4.
Medicine/Medical.
  1. the point in the course of a serious disease at which a decisive change occurs, leading either to recovery or to death.
  2. the change itself.
5.
the point in a play or story at which hostile elements are most tensely opposed to each other.
adjective
6.
of, referring to, or for use in dealing with a crisis.
Origin
late Middle English
1375-1425
1375-1425; late Middle English < Latin < Greek krísis decision, equivalent to kri- variant stem of krī́nein to decide, separate, judge + -sis -sis
Related forms
crisic, adjective
postcrisis, adjective, noun, plural postcrises.
Synonyms
1. See emergency.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples for crisis
  • Imagine trying to remain calm and composed while working in the middle of a war zone, a natural disaster, or other crisis.
  • But this work has not amounted to a solution to the public health crisis.
  • Stop the crisis stuff, because the ship has left the dock on that one now.
  • To some geologists, the world is heading toward an oil crisis of historic proportions.
  • When you look at the banking crisis, it was about investing in things that had no value.
  • Falling wholesale prices caused by overproduction has created a crisis for coffee farmers worldwide.
  • US officials have urged a wider evacuation area and warn that it could take weeks to get the crisis under control.
  • The enemy of our enemy may be our new partner in stopping a global health crisis.
  • Both the book and film call awareness to the global warming crisis through emotional connection to the characters.
  • The current crisis is caused, in part, by inadequate regulation.
British Dictionary definitions for crisis

crisis

/ˈkraɪsɪs/
noun (pl) -ses (-siːz)
1.
a crucial stage or turning point in the course of something, esp in a sequence of events or a disease
2.
an unstable period, esp one of extreme trouble or danger in politics, economics, etc
3.
(pathol) a sudden change, for better or worse, in the course of a disease
Word Origin
C15: from Latin: decision, from Greek krisis, from krinein to decide
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for crisis
n.

early 15c., from Latinized form of Greek krisis "turning point in a disease" (used as such by Hippocrates and Galen), literally "judgment, result of a trial, selection," from krinein "to separate, decide, judge," from PIE root *krei- "to sieve, discriminate, distinguish" (cf. Greek krinesthai "to explain;" Old English hriddel "sieve;" Latin cribrum "sieve," crimen "judgment, crime," cernere (past participle cretus) "to sift, separate;" Old Irish criathar, Old Welsh cruitr "sieve;" Middle Irish crich "border, boundary"). Transferred non-medical sense is 1620s in English. A German term for "mid-life crisis" is Torschlusspanik, literally "shut-door-panic," fear of being on the wrong side of a closing gate.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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crisis in Medicine

crisis cri·sis (krī'sĭs)
n. pl. cri·ses (-sēz)

  1. A sudden change in the course of a disease or fever, toward either improvement or deterioration.

  2. An emotionally stressful event or a traumatic change in one's life.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Encyclopedia Article for crisis

(Greek: "ladder"), in dramatic and nondramatic fiction, the point at which the highest level of interest and emotional response is achieved.

Learn more about crisis with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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