Accident definition

ăksĭ-dənt, -dĕnt
Frequency:
An unpleasant and unintended happening, sometimes resulting from negligence, that results in injury, loss, damage, etc.
noun
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A happening that is not expected, foreseen, or intended.
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An accident that is not caused by the negligence or other fault of anyone involved.
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Fortune; chance.

To meet by accident.

noun
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An unexpected event with negative consequences occurring without the intention of the one suffering the consequences.

To die by an accident.

noun
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An unintended and unexpected event, especially one that is undesirable or harmful, that does not occur in the usual course of events under the circumstances in which it occurred, or that would not be reasonably anticipated.
noun
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In equity, an unexpected and injurious event not caused by misconduct, mistake, or negligence.
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In many automobile insurance policies, any unintentional event including those caused by misconduct, mistake, or negligence.
noun
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Any chance event.
noun
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The definition of an accident is an event that happens without being planned.

An example of an accident is a collision between two cars.

An example of an accident is when you bump into a friend unexpectedly at the park or when you find a $20 bill lying on the sidewalk.

noun
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(uncountable) Chance.
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(transport, vehicles) An unintended event such as a collision that causes damage or death.

There was a huge accident on I5 involving 15 automobiles. My insurance is expensive now, mostly because of those two accidents.

noun
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Any property, fact, or relation that is the result of chance or is nonessential.

Beauty is an accident.

noun
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(philosophy) A circumstance or attribute that is not essential to the nature of something.
noun
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An unforeseen event that is not the result of intention or has no apparent cause.

A series of happy accidents led to his promotion.

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An instance of involuntary urination or defecation.
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(law) An unforeseen event that occurs without anyone's fault or negligence.
noun
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A collision involving a motor vehicle.
noun
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The wreckage, etc. at the scene of such a collision.

Watch out for the accident on the freeway overpass.

noun
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An unintended, unforeseen, and undesirable event, especially one that causes harm, injury, damage, or loss.
noun
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(euphemistic) An instance of incontinence.
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(euphemistic) An unintended pregnancy.
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(philosophy, logic) A quality or attribute in distinction from the substance, as sweetness, softness.
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(grammar) A property attached to a word, but not essential to it, as gender, number, case.
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(geology) An irregular surface feature with no apparent cause.
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(heraldry) A point or mark which may be retained or omitted in a coat of arms.
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(law) Casus; such unforeseen, extraordinary, extraneous interference as is out of the range of ordinary calculation.
noun
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(military) An unplanned event that results in injury (including death) or occupational illness to person(s) and/or damage to property, exclusive of injury and/or damage caused by action of an enemy or hostile force.
noun
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(uncountable, philosophy, uncommon) Appearance, manifestation.
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Lack of intention; chance.

Ran into an old friend by accident.

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An unexpected and undesirable event, especially one resulting in damage or harm.

An accident on the assembly line; car accidents on icy roads.

noun
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An attribute or quality that is not essential.
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(geog., geol.) An irregular formation.
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Other Word Forms

Noun

Singular:
accident
Plural:
accidents

Origin of accident

  • Middle English chance event from Old French from Latin accidēns accident- present participle of accidere to happen ad- ad- cadere to fall kad- in Indo-European roots

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • First attested in the late 14th century. First attested in reference to an unintended pregnancy in 1932. From Middle English, from Old French accident, from Latin accidēns, present active participle of accidō (“happen”); from ad (“to”) + cadō (“fall”). See cadence, case.

    From Wiktionary