noun, plural contingencies.
dependence on chance or on the fulfillment of a condition; uncertainty; fortuitousness: Nothing was left to contingency.
a contingent event; a chance, accident, or possibility conditional on something uncertain: He was prepared for every contingency.
something incidental to a thing.

1555–65; conting(ent) + -ency

2. emergency, likelihood, predicament. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
contingency (kənˈtɪndʒənsɪ)
n , pl -cies
1.  a.  a possible but not very likely future event or condition; eventuality
 b.  (as modifier): a contingency plan
2.  something dependent on a possible future event
3.  a fact, event, etc, incidental to or dependent on something else
4.  in systemic grammar
 a.  Compare adding modification of the meaning of a main clause by use of a bound clause introduced by a binder such as if, when, though, or since
 b.  (as modifier): a contingency clause
5.  logic
 a.  the state of being contingent
 b.  a contingent statement
6.  dependence on chance; uncertainty
7.  statistics
 a.  the degree of association between theoretical and observed common frequencies of two graded or classified variables. It is measured by the chi-square test
 b.  (as modifier): a contingency table; the contingency coefficient

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

1560s, "quality of being contingent," from contingent (q.v.). Meaning "a chance occurrence" is from 1610s.

"unexpected additional expenses," 1660s, from contingency.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Putting too many contingencies in your offer, however, is likely to derail your
There were no contingencies or caveats in the offer letter.
They are not meant to account for all unforeseen contingencies.
The amount of oversight for contingencies relating to disaster was negligible.
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