Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A coarse, light, unevenly woven fabric of cotton or linen, used for towels and curtains.
  • noun Starched reinforced fabric used to strengthen a book binding or the spine of a bound book.
  • intransitive verb To break violently or noisily; smash.
  • intransitive verb To undergo sudden damage or destruction on impact.
  • intransitive verb To make a sudden loud noise.
  • intransitive verb To move noisily or so as to cause damage.
  • intransitive verb To undergo a sudden severe downturn, as a market or economy.
  • intransitive verb Computers To stop functioning due to a crash.
  • intransitive verb Slang To undergo a period of unpleasant feeling or depression as an aftereffect of drug-taking.
  • intransitive verb To find temporary lodging or shelter, as for the night.
  • intransitive verb To fall asleep from exhaustion.
  • intransitive verb To cause to crash.
  • intransitive verb To dash to pieces; smash.
  • intransitive verb Informal To join or enter (a party, for example) without invitation.
  • noun A sudden loud noise, as of an object breaking.
  • noun A smashing to pieces.
  • noun A collision, as between two automobiles. synonym: collision.
  • noun A sudden severe downturn.
  • noun A sudden failure of a hard drive caused by damaging contact between the head and the storage surface, often resulting in the loss of data on the drive.
  • noun A sudden failure of a program or operating system, usually without serious consequences.
  • noun Slang Mental depression after drug-taking.
  • adjective Of or characterized by an intensive effort to produce or accomplish.
  • idiom (crash and burn) To fail utterly.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To make a loud, clattering, complex sound, as of many solid things falling and breaking together; fall down or in pieces with such a noise.
  • To cause to make a sudden, violent sound, as of breaking or dashing in pieces; dash down or break to pieces violently with a loud noise; dash or shiver with tumult and violence.
  • noun A loud, harsh, multifarious sound, as of solid or heavy things falling and breaking together: as, the crash of a falling tree or a falling house, or any similar sound.
  • noun A falling down or in pieces with a loud noise of breaking parts; hence, figuratively, destruction; breaking up; specifically, the failure of a commercial undertaking; financial ruin.
  • noun A basket filled with fragments of pottery or glass, used in a theater to simulate the sound of the breaking of windows, crockery, etc.
  • noun A strong, coarse linen fabric used for toweling, for packing, and for dancing-cloths to cover carpets.
  • noun A piece or covering of this material, as a dancing-cloth.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun Coarse, heavy, narrow linen cloth, used esp. for towels.
  • noun A loud, sudden, confused sound, as of many things falling and breaking at once.
  • noun Ruin; failure; sudden breaking down, as of a business house or a commercial enterprise.
  • intransitive verb To make a loud, clattering sound, as of many things falling and breaking at once; to break in pieces with a harsh noise.
  • intransitive verb To break with violence and noise.
  • transitive verb rare To break in pieces violently; to dash together with noise and violence.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun fibre Plain linen.
  • noun An automobile, airplane, or other vehicle accident.
  • noun A computer malfunction that is caused by faulty software, and makes the system either partially or totally inoperable.
  • noun A loud sound as made for example by cymbals.
  • noun A sudden large decline of business or the prices of stocks (especially one that causes additional failures)
  • noun A comedown of a drug.
  • noun A group of rhinoceroses.
  • noun dysphoria
  • adjective quick, fast, intensive
  • verb transitive To collide with something destructively, fall or come down violently.

Etymologies

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

[From Russian krashenina, colored linen, from krashenie, coloring, from krasit', to color; see ker- in Indo-European roots.]

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

[Middle English crasschen; probably akin to crasen, to shatter; see craze.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Russian крашенина (krašenína, "coarse linen").

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English crasschen ("to break into pieces"), of unknown origin, possibly onomatopoeia.

Examples

  • The _crash, crash, crash, crash_ of four heavy shells, one following another almost as quickly as you would read the words, focused all one's attention on that point.

    Letters from France

  • You can just hear, through the crash, the shriek of a third and fourth shell as they come tearing down the vault of heaven -- _crash -- crash_.

    Letters from France

  • For some odd reason, people who work in a field where the word crash brings to mind human injury rather than balky software tend to work slowly and methodically.

    TIME.com: Top Stories

  • In a four-stroke engine to see dirt bike is sturdy and durable, perfect for a rookie pilot who is likely to be familiar with the term crash and burn.

    xml's Blinklist.com

  • He thinks the crash is the best thing that ever happened to him, that he now can eat the strawberries he was previously seriously allergic to, that he can truly savor life, that he's already dead, that he's invulnerable - he walks through traffic, shouting to the sky, "You want to kill me, but you can't!", and throws away his son's videogame because in real life people don't come back to life.

    intertribal: this is it. this is the moment of your death.

  • He thinks the crash is the best thing that ever happened to him, that he now can eat the strawberries he was previously seriously allergic to, that he can truly savor life, that he's already dead, that he's invulnerable - he walks through traffic, shouting to the sky, "You want to kill me, but you can't!", and throws away his son's videogame because in real life people don't come back to life.

    this is it. this is the moment of your death.

  • Another critical piece of evidence concerning the nature of this crash is the relatively large section of anti-G garment that was recovered unburned with the zipper still closed.

    19 New POW Cases

  • In fact, all I really remember of the crash is a long time of crunching and jolting, just before something tore open my door and sent me hurtling out into empty space, that swallowed me up in a black abyss.

    Juvenalia II: Action!

  • Whether you start out cautious or excited, the crash is the same either way.

    Repetitive Virginity

  • CNN's Richard Quest got what they call a crash course.

    CNN Transcript Mar 9, 2009

Comments

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  • Coarse, heavy, narrow linen cloth, used esp. for towels.

    December 26, 2007

  • In the running for 2nd best movie ever...(in my opinion, of course). Maybe I should have categories...

    September 20, 2008

  • "accident" versus "crash"


    See Matt Richtel, 

    It’s No Accident: Advocates Want to Speak of Car ‘Crashes’ Instead

    , N.Y. Times, May 22, 2016.

    “When you use the word ‘accident,’ it’s like, ‘God made it happen,’ ” Mark Rosekind, the head of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, said at a driver safety conference this month at the Harvard School of Public Health.

    . . .

    Almost all crashes stem from driver behavior like drinking, distracted driving and other risky activity. About 6 percent are caused by vehicle malfunctions, weather and other factors.

    . . .

    Dr. Rosekind has added his voice to a growing chorus of advocates who say that the persistence of crashes . . . can be explained in part by widespread apathy toward the issue. 

    Changing semantics is meant to shake people, particularly policy makers, out of the implicit nobody’s-fault attitude that the word “accident” conveys, they said.

    Id. Interesting historical note:

    The word was introduced into the lexicon of manufacturing and other industries in the early 1900s, when companies were looking to protect themselves from the costs of caring for workers who were injured on the job, according to Peter Norton, a historian and associate professor at the University of Virginia's department of engineering.

    . . .

    When traffic deaths spiked in the 1920s, a consortium of auto-industry interests, including insurers, borrowed the word to shift the focus away from the cars themselves. "Automakers were very interested in blaming reckless drivers," Dr. Norton said.

    But over time, he said, the word has come to exonerate the driver, too, with "accident" seeming like a lightning strike, beyond anyone's control."

    Id.



    See Drop the 'A' Word blog, The blog's tagline:


    Not all crashes are "accidents". Crimes are not "accidents". It's not an "accident" when a person makes a decision to drive drunk, distracted, or in a negligent manner. Stop giving criminals a pass by calling it an "accident".

    Id.



    See Crash not Accident website.

    May 25, 2016