Definition of dangerous in US English:



  • 1Able or likely to cause harm or injury.

    ‘a dangerous animal’
    ‘ice was making the roads dangerous’
    • ‘In short, land mines are nasty, out-of-date, and dangerous to your own side.’
    • ‘The conditions he began fighting in 1969 are much worse today and far more dangerous to many more people.’
    • ‘The match was cancelled after both umpires and captains agreed it would be dangerous to play on a dry pitch.’
    • ‘The things he says are dangerous to certain members of our community.’
    • ‘They are also dangerous to the user, as the weakened barrel can explode if used with live ammunition.’
    • ‘The elderly find it dangerous to cross the road at a pelican crossing or a zebra crossing because of speeding vehicles.’
    • ‘They say the weather had made it difficult to gain access to the site and scaffolding too dangerous to stand on.’
    • ‘First a load of rocks had to be dropped on the drive, turning it from dangerous to pretty much impassable.’
    • ‘It was very dark and the terrain was dangerous so it was decided that it was too dangerous to carry on with the search.’
    • ‘He knew that the alternative to his kind of democracy lay with men far more dangerous to the country than he.’
    • ‘The furrows are over an inch deep and it is far too dangerous to play on, it would be very easy for someone to break their leg.’
    • ‘When he was stopped, he said that the police car had been too close behind him and that had been dangerous to him.’
    • ‘It is very dangerous to look directly into the sun.’
    • ‘She said she thought rubbish could be dangerous to young children as well as animals.’
    • ‘It decided, no doubt on good grounds, that these men were far too dangerous to be allowed at liberty.’
    • ‘Experiments that are too dangerous to do in a classroom can be conducted in a virtual setting online.’
    • ‘Eighteen cabbies have been banned from picking up fares after their vehicles were found to be too dangerous to drive.’
    • ‘It is also more dangerous to travel by train or Tube than by airline.’
    • ‘The Yugoslavian situation was deemed to be too complicated and too dangerous to resolve by firm action.’
    • ‘It's too dangerous to go out anywhere but there's no point anyway because all the shops are closed.’
    menacing, threatening, treacherous
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    1. 1.1 Likely to cause problems or to have adverse consequences.
      ‘it is dangerous to underestimate an enemy’
      • ‘It's very dangerous to use the language of the culture to interpret the gospel.’
      • ‘What can you do to reassure people that voting is not going to be dangerous to them?’
      • ‘This is a dangerous dynamic indeed, with very real consequences for people on the receiving end.’
      • ‘It's always dangerous to speculate on when an incident might or might not occur.’
      • ‘It is at least as important to challenge the dangerous assumptions of their opponents.’
      • ‘Vouchers are stigmatised by their opponents as a dangerous idea of the radical right.’
      • ‘It should be exposed for what it is, which is dangerous delusion at best.’
      • ‘Ideas may be dangerous, and may have had bad consequences, but it does not follow that they cannot have good uses.’
      • ‘If that were the extent of their meddling that would be bad enough but there have been dark and dangerous consequences.’
      • ‘Is it wise or even just, he asks, to expose our children to cultural viruses that are irrational and dangerous?’
      • ‘It is, of course, always dangerous to conclude too much from early evidence.’
      • ‘On the question of image, any paternal counsel given may have dangerous consequences.’
      • ‘What follows exposes the work's innards and the dangerous ideology that informs it.’
      • ‘Both warn of the dangerous consequences of voting in favour of their opponents.’
      • ‘In the event of a major flood this could have dangerous consequences for those who live in the surrounding area.’
      • ‘Such methods brand those in power as reckless and dangerous political provocateurs.’
      • ‘How could anyone support this frankly ridiculous criminally dangerous reckless and rash point of view?’
      • ‘It is really dangerous to apply stereotypes on such immensely diverse community.’
      • ‘Running away was less dangerous than rebellion, but it was still a hazardous enterprise.’
      • ‘The LibDem leader told the Sunday Herald it would be dangerous to silence opposing points of view.’
      hazardous, perilous, risky, high-risk, fraught with danger, unsafe, uncertain, unpredictable, precarious, insecure, exposed, vulnerable, touch-and-go, chancy, tricky, treacherous
      View synonyms


Middle English (in the senses ‘arrogant’, ‘fastidious’, and ‘difficult to please’): from Old French dangereus, from dangier (see danger).