Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

  

English definition of “tragedy”

tragedy

noun [C or U]     /ˈtrædʒ.ə.di/
B2 a very sad event or situation, especially one involving death or suffering: The pilot averted a tragedy when he succeeded in preventing the plane from crashing. Hitler's invasion of Poland led to the tragedy of the Second World War. His life was touched by hardship and personal tragedy. They had only recently arrived in London when tragedy struck - their son was killed in a traffic accident. [+ (that)] It's a tragedy (that) so many young people are unable to find jobs.Accidents and disastersDifficult situations and unpleasant experiencesFailures a play about death or suffering with a sad end, or this type of play generally: Shakespeare's tragedies include 'Hamlet', 'King Lear' and 'Othello'. In Greek tragedy, the role of the chorus is to express the audience's reactions to what is happening in the play.Drama and plays
(Definition of tragedy noun from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
Focus on the pronunciation of tragedy

Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Accidents and disasters, but you might be interested in these topics from the Happenings and events topic area:

Definitions of “tragedy” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

warm-up

something that you do to prepare yourself for an activity, especially gentle exercises before a physical activity

Word of the Day

Blog

Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More