Awfulness – Definition & Meaning

The term “awfulness” is a word that is used to describe something that is extremely unpleasant, terrible, or dreadful. It is a word that can be used to describe a variety of different situations, experiences, and emotions.


The word “awfulness” is typically used to describe something that is very bad or unpleasant. It can refer to a situation or experience that is extremely difficult or challenging, such as a natural disaster or a personal tragedy. It can also refer to a feeling of intense discomfort or unease, such as the feeling of dread that comes with a difficult decision or a looming deadline.


The word “awfulness” has its roots in the Old English word “egeful”, which means “full of fear or dread”. Over time, the word evolved to take on a broader meaning, encompassing a range of negative emotions and experiences.

Meaning in different dictionaries

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, “awfulness” is defined as “the quality or state of being extremely unpleasant or bad”. The Oxford English Dictionary defines it as “the quality or state of being extremely bad or unpleasant”.


The word “awfulness” is often associated with negative emotions such as fear, dread, and anxiety. It is also associated with negative experiences such as illness, loss, and trauma.


Some synonyms for “awfulness” include: terribleness, horror, misery, wretchedness, and distress.


Antonyms for “awfulness” include: goodness, happiness, joy, pleasure, and delight.

The same root words

Other words that share the same root as “awfulness” include: awe, awesome, and awful.

Example Sentences

  • The awfulness of the storm left the town in ruins.
  • She couldn’t bear the awfulness of the situation and broke down in tears.
  • The awfulness of his illness made it difficult for him to carry out his daily tasks.
  • Despite the awfulness of the situation, they managed to find some small moments of joy.
  • The awfulness of the experience stayed with her for years to come.
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