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miasma Syllabification: mi·as·ma
Pronunciation: /mīˈazmə/

Definition of miasma in English:

noun (plural miasmas or miasmata-mətə)

1A highly unpleasant or unhealthy smell or vapor: a miasma of stale alcohol hung around him like marsh gas
More example sentences
  • Today's the day for refuse collection where I live, and the miasma of smells and stench from the bins was like wading through a marsh this morning.
  • Before Pasteur, dreadful smells and miasmas ruled the roost, the only accepted causes of illness, while after Pasteur, disease was all down to germs.
  • Each new smell cue would simply add to the miasma of conflicting odours, and people were often seen fleeing the theatre, holding their noses.
gas, cloud, smog, vapor
1.1An oppressive or unpleasant atmosphere that surrounds or emanates from something: a miasma of despair rose from the black workshops
More example sentences
  • The retail plant industry is too large and lucrative to allow us plantspeople to languish in a miasma of monochrome, although of course it is perfectly possible to have a simply wonderful garden just by using all-green plants.
  • The world kept breaking up into a miasma of red dots and smeared vision.
  • All of them sensed the palpable miasma of evil which clung to its tunnels, though some were more sensitive to it than others.


Pronunciation: /mīˈazməl/ /mēˈazməl/
Example sentences
  • As the weather deteriorated from brilliant sunshine at the start of play to miasmal gloom in the second half, so the away side's fortunes began to rally.
  • In a 1940 newspaper column prior to the publication of the book, O Nuallain lamented ‘the cult of prudishness and prurience which hangs over Irish literature to-day like an eroding miasmal pall.’
  • Instead, according to critics, it has become a miasmal swamp of convoluted regulations that disrupt physician autonomy and patient well-being.
Pronunciation: /ˌmīəzˈmatik/
Example sentences
  • The painkillers killed the pain, induced a marvelous, floaty sort of feeling, and lifted my spirits to the point where I was filled with a sort of miasmatic love for every other man, woman, and small furry animal on the planet.
  • The texture of the air is different; drier, fresher: late August is miasmatic, but all that's gone now.
  • To allay anxiety about deleterious perspiration and open pores in the miasmatic tropics, the British insisted on wearing thick flannel next to the skin.


Mid 17th century: from Greek, literally 'defilement', from miainein 'pollute'.

Words that rhyme with miasma

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