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See also: Tribulation



Middle English tribulation, from Old French tribulacion, from Late Latin tribulatio (distress, trouble, tribulation, affliction), from tribulare (to press, probably also thresh out grain), from tribulum (a sledge consisting of a wooden block studded with sharp pieces of flint or with iron teeth, used for threshing grain), from terere (to rub); see trite.



tribulation (plural tribulations)

  1. Any adversity; a trying period or event.
    • 1535, Thomas More, Dialogue of Comfort Against Tribulation, ch. 6:
      For the blessed apostle himself in his sore tribulation, praying thrice unto God to take it away from him, was answered again by God (in a manner) that he was but a fool in asking that request, but that the help of God's grace in that tribulation to strengthen him was far better for him than to take that tribulation from him.
    • 1847, Herman Melville, Omoo, ch. 11:
      Baltimore's tribulations were indeed sore; there was no peace for him day nor night.
    • 1944 June 27, Herbert Hoover, Speech in Chicago, Illinois to the 23rd Republican National Convention:
      It is youth who must inherit the tribulation, the sorrow and the triumphs that are the aftermath of war.
    • 2009 Sept. 24, Richard Corliss, "Kristina: A New Musical from the ABBA Guys," New York Times (retrieved 12 March 2014):
      Essentially stoic, passive characters, Kristina and the others triumph by surviving — by outliving their plagues and tribulations.


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tribulation f (plural tribulations)

  1. tribulation