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ominous

adjective

Definition: foreshadowing or suggesting that something bad is going to happen in the future

Synonyms: foreboding, foretelling, forbidding, portentous, warning, threatening, dire, gloomy

Antonyms: lucky, auspicious, favorable, promising, beneficial

Tips: Ominous is related to the word omen, which is a sign of things to come. Omens can be lucky or unlucky, but ominous is always used in reference to evil or danger. It is often used in the phrase "ominous sign." For a memory trick, note how ominous sounds like "oh my God, a noose." Now consider how ominous an empty noose would look to an arrested criminal in the Old Wild West (they used to hang people for stealing horses). A person might say "oh my God, a noose" at the ominous site of an empty noose.

Usage Examples:

We could tell, by the ominous clouds on the horizon, that a big storm was coming. (forbidding, threatening)

The empty malls and shopping centers were an ominous sign that the economy was in a recession. (dire, portentous)

An ominous silence fell upon the room just before the bad news was announced. (foreboding, gloomy)

The leak in our roof was an ominous sign that expensive repairs would have to be made. (foretelling, warning)


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