pestilence

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See also: Pestilence

English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English, from Old French, from Latin pestilentia (plague), from pestilens (infected, unwholesome, noxious); see pestilent.

Noun[edit]

pestilence (countable and uncountable, plural pestilences)

  1. Any epidemic disease that is highly contagious, infectious, virulent and devastating.
    • 1949 - Bruce Kiskaddon, George R. Stewart, Earth Abides
      The snowshoe-rabbits build up through the years until they reach a climax when they seem to be everywhere; then with dramatic suddenness their pestilence falls upon them.
    • 1826, Mary Shelley, The Last Man, part 2, chapter 2
      "Take it, Christian dogsǃ take the palaces, the gardens, the mosques, the abode of our fathers - take plague with them; pestilence is the enemy we fly; if she be your friend, hug her to your bosoms. The curse of Allah is on Stamboul, share ye her fateǃ"
  2. (archaic) Anything harmful to morals or public order.

Related terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

Further reading[edit]


French[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Old French pestilence, borrowed from Latin pestilentia.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

pestilence f (plural pestilences)

  1. (archaic or literary) pest epidemic; pestilence
  2. extremely foul smell
    Synonyms: infection, puanteur

Derived terms[edit]

References[edit]


Old French[edit]

Noun[edit]

pestilence f (oblique plural pestilences, nominative singular pestilence, nominative plural pestilences)

  1. pestilence (epidemic disease)