Definitions

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

  • noun The act of damning or the condition of being damned.
  • interjection Used to express anger or annoyance.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Same as tarnal.

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

  • noun archaic The act or process of damnation or reprobation; hell.

Etymologies

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

[Alteration (influenced by tarnal) of darnation.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From darnation, influenced by tarnal (from "eternal"), from (euphemistic) damnation; see darn.

Examples

Comments

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  • Roughly a synonym for the world, or some equally vast and inexplicable place. Uses include "what in tarnation do you think you're up to" and "where in tarnation is my wallet?"

    July 3, 2008

  • I LOVE tarnation. It always makes me think of Yosemite Sam -- and he always makes me laugh!

    July 3, 2008

  • Interesting, Asativum! I always thought it was a euphemism for Hell.

    tmyn

    July 3, 2008

  • Well, actually, now that I think about it, arby, you're probably right. I was just leaping to conclusions from the usage I've heard.

    July 3, 2008

  • I think Hell could be described as a "vast and inexplicable place." The netherworld.

    July 3, 2008

  • And yet I still haven't found my wallet. :-\

    July 4, 2008

  • Tar nation. Tarn at ion.

    June 5, 2015