the state of being desperate or of having the recklessness of despair.
the act or fact of despairing; despair.

1325–75; Middle English desperacioun < Latin dēspērātiōn- (stem of dēspērātiō). See desperate, -ion

1. See despair. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
desperation (ˌdɛspəˈreɪʃən)
1.  desperate recklessness
2.  the act of despairing or the state of being desperate

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

mid-14c., from L. desperationem, noun of action from desperare "lose hope" (see despair).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
At the time, the request was considered an act of desperation.
The last thing you want to convey to search committees is desperation or rage.
But it went for bankruptcy protection now, he says, so it would not have to do
  it in total desperation when the money had run out.
These are desperate times, and desperate times call for desperation.
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