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See also: Jeopardy



From Middle English jupartie, jeopardie (even chance), from Old French jeu parti (a divided game, i.e. an even game, an even chance), from Medieval Latin iocus partītus (an even chance, an alternative), from Latin iocus (jest, play, game) + partītus, perfect passive participle of partiō (divide); see joke and party.[1][2][3]


  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈd͡ʒɛpədi/
  • (US) IPA(key): /ˈd͡ʒɛpɚdi/
  • (file)


jeopardy (usually uncountable, plural jeopardies)

  1. Danger of failure, harm, or loss.
    Synonyms: gamble, hazard, peril, risk; see also Thesaurus:danger
    The poor condition of the vehicle put its occupants in constant jeopardy.
    • 1556, John Heywood, “The Introduction to the Matter, Showing howe the Flie Chaunced to Fall into the Spiders Copweb”, in The Spider and the Flie. [], London: [] Tho[mas] Powell, →OCLC; republished as A[dolphus] W[illiam] Ward, editor, The Spider and the Flie. [] (Publications of the Spenser Society, New Series; 6), Manchester: [] [Charles E. Simms] for the Spenser Society, 1894, →OCLC, page 27:
      Thus chaunce hath (by exchaunge) the flie ſo trapt, / That ſodainly he loſt his libertee: / The more he wrange, the faſter was he wrapt [in the spider's web] / And all to thencreaſe of his ieoberdee, []
    • 2006, Paul Chadwick, Concrete: Killer Smile, Introduction, p.4:
      It seemed to me I could do something in that vein with my characters: the ticking clock, dire jeopardy, quick changes of fortune, small acts having huge consequences.
    • 2011 January 11, Jonathan Stevenson, “West Ham 2 – 1 Birmingham”, in BBC Sport[1]:
      When Obinna was red carded shortly after for a ridiculous kick on Larsson it seemed as though West Ham's hopes of reaching Wembley, and in turn Grant's of keeping his job, lay in serious jeopardy.

Derived terms[edit]



jeopardy (third-person singular simple present jeopardies, present participle jeopardying, simple past and past participle jeopardied)

  1. (transitive, archaic) To jeopardize; to endanger.


  1. ^ jeopardy”, in Unabridged,, LLC, 1995–present.
  2. ^ Douglas Harper (2001–2023), “jeopardy”, in Online Etymology Dictionary.
  3. ^ Collins English Dictionary 2009

Further reading[edit]