peril

If you realize mid-climb that your rock climbing rope is frayed, you might be in peril. The word peril means imminent danger to life and limb.

Peril comes from the Latin peric(u)lum, meaning danger. Today it's often used in tandem with the word mortal, which relates to death. For example, you're in mortal peril when you're flying down a cliff-side trail on your mountain bike and you hit loose gravel. Peril can also describe dangers of a less physical sort, though it's less common. If your employer sinks your 401K into what turns out to be a Ponzi scheme, he's put your retirement in peril.

DEFINITIONS OF: peril

1

n a state of danger involving risk

Synonyms:
riskiness
Types:
speculativeness
financial risk
Type of:
danger
the condition of being susceptible to harm or injury

n a source of danger; a possibility of incurring loss or misfortune

Synonyms:
endangerment, hazard, jeopardy, risk
Types:
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health hazard
hazard to the health of those exposed to it
moral hazard
(economics) the lack of any incentive to guard against a risk when you are protected against it (as by insurance)
occupational hazard
any condition of a job that can result in illness or injury
sword of Damocles
a constant and imminent peril
biohazard
hazard to humans or the environment resulting from biological agents or conditions
Type of:
danger
a cause of pain or injury or loss

n a venture undertaken without regard to possible loss or injury

Synonyms:
danger, risk
Types:
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chance
a risk involving danger
crapshoot
a risky and uncertain venture
gamble
a risky act or venture
long shot
a venture that involves great risk but promises great rewards
raise
increasing the size of a bet (as in poker)
Type of:
venture
any venturesome undertaking especially one with an uncertain outcome

v pose a threat to; present a danger to

Synonyms:
endanger, imperil, jeopardise, jeopardize, menace, threaten
Type of:
be, exist
have an existence, be extant

v put in a dangerous, disadvantageous, or difficult position

Synonyms:
endanger, expose, queer, scupper
Types:
compromise
expose or make liable to danger, suspicion, or disrepute
Type of:
affect, bear on, bear upon, impact, touch, touch on
have an effect upon
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