An example of serendipity is finding a twenty dollar bill in the pocket of a coat you haven't worn in awhile.
- a seeming gift for finding something good accidentally
- luck, or good fortune, in finding something good accidentally
- pl. -·ties an instance of finding something good accidentally
Origin of serendipitycoined (c. 1754) by Horace Walpole after The Three Princes of Serendip (i.e., Sri Lanka), a Persian fairy tale in which the princes make such discoveries
- The faculty of making fortunate discoveries by accident.
- The fact or occurrence of such discoveries.
- An instance of making such a discovery.
Origin of serendipityFrom the characters in the Persian fairy tale The Three Princes of Serendip, who made such discoveries, from Persian Sarand&imacron;p, Sri Lanka, from Arabic Sarand&imacron;b, ultimately from Sanskrit Si&mlowdot;haladv&imacron;pa&hlowdot; : Si&mlowdot;hala&hlowdot;, Sri Lanka + dv&imacron;pa&hlowdot;, island; see Dhivehi.
(countable and uncountable, plural serendipities)
- An unsought, unintended, and/or unexpected, but fortunate, discovery and/or learning experience that happens by accident.
- A combination of events which are not individually beneficial, but occurring together produce a good or wonderful outcome.
Serendipity is sometimes used loosely as a synonym for luck; more careful usage, particularly in science, emphasizes specifically "finding something when looking for something else, thanks to an observant mind".
The term was virtually unknown until the 1870s, and gained currency in the early 20th century. It became popularized at mid-century, and is now widely used.
- Murphy's law
- perfect storm
From Serendip (“variant of Serendib: Ceylon, Sri Lanka") +"Ž -ity. Coined by Horace Walpole in 1754 based on the Persian story of The Three Princes of Serendip, who (Walpole wrote to a friend) were “always making discoveries, by accidents and sagacity, of things which they were not in quest of".