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[kuh-lam-i-tuh s] /kəˈlæm ɪ təs/
causing or involving calamity; disastrous:
a calamitous defeat.
Origin of calamitous
1535-45; calamit(y) + -ous
Related forms
calamitously, adverb
calamitousness, noun
uncalamitous, adjective
uncalamitously, adverb
catastrophic, ruinous, devastating.
beneficial, advantageous. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for calamitous
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • In proportion as I drew near the city, the tokens of its calamitous condition became more apparent.

    Arthur Mervyn Charles Brockden Brown
  • But, as to France, I have no doubt in saying that to her it will be calamitous.

    Patrick Henry Moses Coit Tyler
  • The accumulated effect of the calamitous recital was to stun her.

    The City of Delight Elizabeth Miller
  • The most sanguine could not but fear that we were entering a calamitous period.

  • In 1284, during Giovanni Dandolos reign, a calamitous inundation had plunged the people into misery.

    Venice and its Story Thomas Okey
British Dictionary definitions for calamitous


causing, involving, or resulting in a calamity; disastrous
Derived Forms
calamitously, adverb
calamitousness, noun
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 calamitous

1540s, from French calamiteux (16c.), from Latin calamitosus "causing loss, destructive," from calamitas (see calamity). Related: Calamitously; calamitousness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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