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Alternative forms[edit]

  • Chornobyl (as transliterated from Ukrainian)


From Russian Черно́быль ‎(Černóbylʹ), from черно́быль ‎(černóbylʹ, mugwort). Compare Ukrainian Чорнобиль ‎(Čornóbyl’), from чорнобиль ‎(čornóbýl’, mugwort), from чорнe ‎(čórne, black, neuter) + билля ‎(bylljá, grass blades or stalks).


  • (UK) IPA(key): /tʃɜː(ɹ)ˈnɒb.əl/, /tʃə(ɹ)ˈnɒb.əl/
  • Rhymes: -ɒbəl

Proper noun[edit]


  1. An abandoned city in northern Ukraine, known as the site of a nuclear accident.
    • 1991 July 26, “Think Tank on the Efficient Energy Trail”, Christian Science Monitor:
      A couple of oil shocks, a Chernobyl meltdown, and a Gulf War later, his basic message – the need to emphasize efficiency and renewable resources over oil and nuclear power – is still a minority view


Chernobyl ‎(plural Chernobyls)

  1. (by extension) A major nuclear-energy accident.
    • 1994 August, “Nuclear chaos”, Popular Science, volume 245, number 2, page 54: 
      Many secret cities were Chernobyls in slow motion.
    • 1999 May 6, Terence Scully, “When cell phones kill our brain waves, we will worry less”, The Record (Kitchener, Ont.):
      The effects of a Chernobyl disaster in my community would probably be barely noticeable.
    • 2007 September 7, “Imagining a World Without Humans”, NPR_TalkNation:
      So those would be a lot of Chernobyls that the ecosystem would have to deal with.
    • 2010‎ March 10, Ben Garcia, “Many Kuwaitis yet to be convinced on nuke energy”, Kuwait Times:
      It has to be handled properly with great accuracy and no room for mistakes, because if we do have like a Chernobyl catastrophe, God forbid, it could wipe out our entire people.


See also[edit]


Proper noun[edit]

Chernobyl f

  1. Alternative spelling of Chernobil