Definition of destiny noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈdestəni//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈdestəni//
    (pl. destinies) Types of belief
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  1. 1[countable] what happens to somebody or what will happen to them in the future, especially things that they cannot change or avoid the destinies of nations He wants to be in control of his own destiny. The contemporary hero is one who stands out against the crowd to fulfil a personal destiny.
  2. 2[uncountable] the power believed to control events synonym fate I believe there's some force guiding us—call it God, destiny or fate. Synonymsluckchance coincidence accident fate destinyThese are all words for things that happen or the force that causes them to happen.luck the force that causes good or bad things to happen to people:This ring has always brought me good luck.chance the way that some things happen without any cause that you can see or understand:The results could simply be due to chance.coincidence the fact of two things happening at the same time by chance, in a surprising way:They met through a series of strange coincidences.accident something that happens unexpectedly and is not planned in advance:Their early arrival was just an accident.fate the power that is believed to control everything that happens and that cannot be stopped or changed:Fate decreed that she would never reach America.destiny the power that is believed to control events:I believe there’s some force guiding us—call it God, destiny or fate.fate or destiny? Fate can be kind, but this is an unexpected gift; just as often, fate is cruel and makes people feel helpless. Destiny is more likely to give people a sense of power: people who have a strong sense of destiny usually believe that they are meant to be great or do great things.Patterns by …luck/​chance/​coincidence/​accident It’s no coincidence/​accident that… pure/​sheer luck/​chance/​coincidence/​accident to believe in luck/​coincidences/​fate/​destiny See related entries: Types of belief
  3. Word OriginMiddle English: from Old French destinee, from Latin destinata, feminine past participle of destinare ‘make firm, establish’.Extra examples He came to Paris and found his true destiny as a poet. He wanted to take control of his own destiny. He was driven on by a strong sense of destiny. Her destiny lay in that city. It was a decision which could have changed my destiny. No man can escape his destiny. She felt that she had fulfilled her destiny. She had to find her destiny on her own. She set up her own business because she wanted to be in control of her own destiny. She was convinced that sooner or later she would fulfil her destiny. Something was about to happen that would shape her destiny. The time was right for him to meet his destiny. There’s not much you can do but accept your destiny. the destiny that awaited him I believe there’s some force guiding us—call it God, destiny or fate. The destinies of five nations were decided at the peace conference.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: destiny

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