9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[kazh-oo-uh l-tee] /ˈkæʒ u əl ti/
noun, plural casualties.
  1. a member of the armed forces lost to service through death, wounds, sickness, capture, or because his or her whereabouts or condition cannot be determined.
  2. casualties, loss in numerical strength through any cause, as death, wounds, sickness, capture, or desertion.
one who is injured or killed in an accident:
There were no casualties in the traffic accident.
any person, group, thing, etc., that is harmed or destroyed as a result of some act or event:
Their house was a casualty of the fire.
a serious accident, especially one involving bodily injury or death.
Origin of casualty
late Middle English
1375-1425; casual + -ty2; replacing late Middle English casuelte, equivalent to casuel (see casual) + -te -ty2
Can be confused
casualty, causality, causation, cause (see synonym study at cause) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for casualty
  • Another casualty of these straitened financial conditions has been the physical plants of community colleges.
  • Car insurance is three-quarters of the country's property and casualty business.
  • The only casualty in our group was when one of the crazier horses collided into the back of a pickup truck.
  • The acclaimed writer's website is a casualty of cost-cutting moves by the digital cooperative press.
  • In such a fragile region, economic self-confidence may not be the only casualty.
  • Both will remind us that in war the environment is an inevitable casualty.
  • Rapid casualty evacuation by helicopter can only do so much.
  • The first casualty of war is truth, it is often said.
  • And in those cases where the relationship is failing, the academic's work can be but one collateral casualty of a wider war.
  • As for the police, the big casualty is the top cops.
British Dictionary definitions for casualty


noun (pl) -ties
a serviceman who is killed, wounded, captured, or missing as a result of enemy action
a person who is injured or killed in an accident
a hospital department in which victims of accidents, violence, etc, are treated
anything that is lost, damaged, or destroyed as the result of an accident, etc
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for casualty

early 15c., "chance, accident; incidental charge," from casual (adj.) on model of royalty, penalty, etc. Casuality had some currency 16c.-17c. but is now obsolete. Meaning "losses in numbers from a military or other troop" is from late 15c. Meaning "an individual killed, wounded, or lost in battle" is from 1844.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for casualty

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for casualty

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with casualty