Definitions

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

  • n. A widespread affliction or calamity, especially one seen as divine retribution.
  • n. A sudden destructive influx or injurious outbreak: a plague of locusts; a plague of accidents.
  • n. A cause of annoyance; a nuisance: "the plague of social jabbering” ( George Santayana).
  • n. A highly infectious, usually fatal, epidemic disease; a pestilence.
  • n. A highly fatal infectious disease that is caused by the bacterium Yersinia (syn. Pasturella ) pestis, is transmitted primarily by the bite of a rat flea, and occurs in bubonic, pneumonic, and septicemic forms.
  • transitive v. To pester or annoy persistently or incessantly. See Synonyms at harass.
  • transitive v. To afflict with or as if with a disease or calamity: "Runaway inflation further plagued the wage- or salary-earner” ( Edwin O. Reischauer).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The bubonic plague, the pestilent disease caused by the virulent bacterium Yersinia pestis.
  • n. An epidemic or pandemic caused by any pestilence, but specifically by the above disease.
  • n. A widespread affliction, calamity or destructive influx, especially when seen as divine retribution.
  • n. A grave nuisance, whatever greatly irritates
  • v. To harass, pester or annoy someone persistently or incessantly.
  • v. To afflict with a disease or other calamity.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. That which smites, wounds, or troubles; a blow; a calamity; any afflictive evil or torment; a great trail or vexation.
  • n. An acute malignant contagious fever, that often prevails in Egypt, Syria, and Turkey, and has at times visited the large cities of Europe with frightful mortality; hence, any pestilence.
  • transitive v. To infest or afflict with disease, calamity, or natural evil of any kind.
  • transitive v. Fig.: To vex; to tease; to harass.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A blow or calamity; severe trouble or vexation; also, one who or that which troubles or vexes, or ravages or destroys.
  • n. Any epidemic disease of high mortality.
  • n. As an expletive with the article the, used like the devil, the deuce, etc. Compare devil, 7.
  • To vex; harass; trouble; annoy; tease.
  • To infest with disease, calamity, or natural evil of any kind.
  • Synonyms Torment, Worry, etc. (see tease), gall, bore.
  • To afflict.
  • n.

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

  • v. cause to suffer a blight
  • n. any large scale calamity (especially when thought to be sent by God)
  • n. an annoyance
  • n. any epidemic disease with a high death rate
  • n. a swarm of insects that attack plants
  • v. annoy continually or chronically
  • n. a serious (sometimes fatal) infection of rodents caused by Yersinia pestis and accidentally transmitted to humans by the bite of a flea that has bitten an infected animal

Etymologies

Middle English plage, blow, calamity, plague, from Late Latin plāga, from Latin, blow, wound; see plāk-2 in Indo-European roots. V., Middle English plaghen, from Middle Dutch, from plaghe, plague, from Late Latin plāga.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English plage, from Latin plāga ("blow, wound"), from plangō ("to strike"). Cognate with Dutch plaag, German Plage, Swedish plåga, French plaie and Polish plaga. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Friday, November 6, 2009 1: 15 am CST Police prepare drill for plague at school The event will use volunteers pretending to have been stricken by the plague to help test the flow of the site, from initial triage through receiving PROOF of being medicated.www. nwherald.com Ukraine pneumonic plague update 969247 affected fto. co.za Ukraine Flu Trends, OFF THE CHARTS www. google.org URGENT** Ukraine and World Pneumonic Plague Information ukraineplague. blogspot.com Ukraine: Influenza or Pneumonic Plague?

    WN.com - Articles related to India gets own vaccine against swine flu

  • : 15 am CST Police prepare drill for plague at school The event will use volunteers pretending to have been stricken by the plague to help test the flow of the site, from initial triage through receiving PROOF of being medicated.www. nwherald.com Ukraine pneumonic plague update

    WN.com - Articles related to India gets own vaccine against swine flu

  • Although the plague is a fact of history, one will find it difficult to locate anything more horrific than the pestilence that arrived that year in Europe.

    Horrors Prices | SciFi, Fantasy & Horror Collectibles

  • The only fish concoction I avoid like the plague is any piscine soup dish.

    notes from the peanut gallery

  • "Many people say plainly that the coming of the plague is a punishment sent on the Hindus because of their treatment of you in the school matter."

    Daughters of India

  • A leading ballerina at Milan's La Scala who criticised what she described as a plague of

    The Guardian World News

  • I'd have used the word plague, but no, scourge works just as nicely.

    msnbc.com: Top msnbc.com headlines

  • Well, it turns out that the Wulfen plague is a zombie plague.

    AUDIO REVIEW: Thunder From Fenris by Nick Kyme

  • The zombie plague is a sexually transmitted disease, turning its victims into shambling, horny, voracious killers after an incubation period where they become increasingly promiscuous.

    March 2010

  • The story of Professor Moriarty and his connection to London†™ s undead plague is revealed!

    DC Comics for February 2010 | Major Spoilers - Comic Book Reviews and News

Comments

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  • crumbs attacte mice, and mice leave droppings. And that's how the plague started.

    November 22, 2011

  • "A plague of sighing and grief! It blows a man up like a bladder. - Shakespeare, King Henry IV, Part I.

    September 25, 2009