Meaning of “ordeal” in the English Dictionary

british dictionary

"ordeal" in British English

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ordealnoun [ C ]

uk /ɔːˈdɪəl/ us /ɔːrˈdɪəl/

C2 a very unpleasant and painful or difficult experience:

The hostages' ordeal came to an end when soldiers stormed the building.

More examples

  • She looked pale and drawn after her ordeal.
  • He made little of his ordeal.
  • I'm sorry to put you through this ordeal.
  • The love of my family and friends sustained me through my ordeal.
  • Throughout the ordeal of her husband's funeral, Mrs Holmes was a model of deportment .

(Definition of “ordeal” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"ordeal" in American English

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ordealnoun [ C ]

us /ɔrˈdil, -di·əl/

an experience that is very painful, difficult, or tiring:

Her seven-month stay in the hospital was quite an ordeal.

(Definition of “ordeal” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)