happenstance

Definitions

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

  • noun A chance circumstance.

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

  • noun countable A chance or random event or circumstance.
  • noun uncountable The chance or random quality of an event or circumstance.

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

  • noun an event that might have been arranged although it was really accidental

Etymologies

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

[happen + (circum)stance.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Blend of happening and circumstance.

Examples

  • I won’t tell you the main happenstance, because that twist IS the plot … but …. you’ll recognize it too.

    Quick Personal Interlude - then more Urban Bizarre.

  • Using government money on a vast scale to keep the financial markets working, then to save the automobile industry from bankruptcy, has edged the Bush administration deep into a kind of happenstance socialism.

    A Revolutionary President

  • The saying " If....were better I would be okay" has come to sum up a dependence on "happenstance" to bring me or others a sense of well being, okay-ness, safety or joy.

    Joy in the Morning - whatever the day

  • The impression on an anti-Semite or potential anti-Semite is that the 'happenstance' of his vet status saves him from being rightfully obliterated.

    Caught in the Crossfire: Adrian Scott and the Politics of Americanism in 1940s Hollywood

  • While I liked both Gwen and Harry, their relationship - with a 20-year age gap and a failed marriage each - did seem "happenstance," almost as though they ended up together because they were the only two left to get out of Yellowknife relatively unscathed.

    Archive 2008-04-01

  • While I liked both Gwen and Harry, their relationship - with a 20-year age gap and a failed marriage each - did seem "happenstance," almost as though they ended up together because they were the only two left to get out of Yellowknife relatively unscathed.

    Review: Late Nights on Air

  • When reached for comment, Adam L a/k/a clammyc noted that the timing of this post was merely "happenstance". by: you @ soon

    Blue Jersey - Front Page

  • Ms. Jarrett told the crowd that this economic crisis did not occur by "happenstance" but is the result of our "profound irresponsibility."

    Capitol Hill Blue - The oldest political news site on the Internet

  • Using government money on a vast scale to keep the financial markets working, then to save the automobile industry from bankruptcy, has edged the Bush administration deep into a kind of happenstance socialism.

    The New York Review of Books

  • The word karcha comes from the word mikreh - "happenstance"

    Israelated - English Israel blogs

Comments

New comments are temporarily disabled while we update our database.

  • “You can expect to see this word about twice a year.�? – Wordnik

    Wow, I had thought it was fairly common until I noticed that it was even missing from one of my dictionaries. But it's so useful.

    September 22, 2009