Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An unfortunate occurrence; a mishap.
  • n. Bad luck.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Bad luck, misfortune.
  • n. A mishap, an unlucky circumstance.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Ill luck; ill fortune; mishap.
  • intransitive v. To happen by mischance.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To chance or happen wrongly or unfortunately; fall out adversely; meet with a mishap; come to ill luck.
  • n. An unfortunate chance; a mishap; ill luck; disaster.
  • n. Synonyms Mishap, Disaster, etc. See misfortune.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. an instance of misfortune
  • n. an unpredictable outcome that is unfortunate

Etymologies

From Anglo-Norman meschance, Old French meschance, meschaunce. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Debts are mischances, and I am in mischance with you.

    The Wit of Porportuk

  • It will be recalled that the Army, through unpredictable mischance, which is a euphemism for French defection, had lost all its equipment-tanks, guns, transport, and even rifles had gone.

    The Navy

  • They encounter a ship in a lonely solar system, but through a freak mischance, are bonded to the other ship on a path towards the system's star.

    REVIEW: The World Turned Upside Down edited by David Drake, Eric Flint and Jim Baen

  • Can't possibly be Satan, you think He has time for facilitating the tiny sin of being tempted to blaspheme by the mischance of a wayward round?

    Bullets Do Odd Things at Different Ranges

  • Edwin Bentham was a boy, thrust by mischance into a man's body, -- a boy who could complacently pluck a butterfly, wing from wing, or cower in abject terror before a lean, nervy fellow, not half his size.

    THE PRIESTLY PREROGATIVE

  • As mischance would have it, Michael did not reach the ground.

    CHAPTER XXXVI

  • Four had perished by mischance in the bleak, uncharted vastness.

    Chapter 1

  • Her mischance lay in that she bumped her head, and, before she could recover way, Forrest had circled the piano and cornered her under it.

    CHAPTER III

  • And right there Young Dick learned more — ­the mischance of life and fate; the universe hostile to man; the need to perceive and to act, to see and know, to be sure and quick, to adjust instantly to all instant shiftage of the balance of forces that bear upon the living.

    CHAPTER V

  • There it was his mortal mischance to encounter Otto Frank,

    CHAPTER XI

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