Fate Fate (f[=a]t), n. [L. fatum a prophetic declaration, oracle, what is ordained by the gods, destiny, fate, fr. fari to speak: cf. OF. fat. See {Fame}, {Fable}, {Ban}, and cf. 1st {Fay}, {Fairy}.] 1. A fixed decree by which the order of things is prescribed; the immutable law of the universe; inevitable necessity; the force by which all existence is determined and conditioned. [1913 Webster]

Necessity and chance Approach not me; and what I will is fate. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

Beyond and above the Olympian gods lay the silent, brooding, everlasting fate of which victim and tyrant were alike the instruments. --Froude. [1913 Webster]

2. Appointed lot; allotted life; arranged or predetermined event; destiny; especially, the final lot; doom; ruin; death. [1913 Webster]

The great, th'important day, big with the fate Of Cato and of Rome. --Addison. [1913 Webster]

Our wills and fates do so contrary run That our devices still are overthrown. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

The whizzing arrow sings, And bears thy fate, Antinous, on its wings. --Pope. [1913 Webster]

3. The element of chance in the affairs of life; the unforeseen and unestimated conitions considered as a force shaping events; fortune; esp., opposing circumstances against which it is useless to struggle; as, fate was, or the fates were, against him. [1913 Webster]

A brave man struggling in the storms of fate. --Pope. [1913 Webster]

Sometimes an hour of Fate's serenest weather strikes through our changeful sky its coming beams. --B. Taylor. [1913 Webster]

4. pl. [L. Fata, pl. of fatum.] (Myth.) The three goddesses, Clotho, Lachesis, and Atropos, sometimes called the {Destinies}, or {Parc[ae]}who were supposed to determine the course of human life. They are represented, one as holding the distaff, a second as spinning, and the third as cutting off the thread. [1913 Webster]

Note: Among all nations it has been common to speak of fate or destiny as a power superior to gods and men -- swaying all things irresistibly. This may be called the fate of poets and mythologists. Philosophical fate is the sum of the laws of the universe, the product of eternal intelligence and the blind properties of matter. Theological fate represents Deity as above the laws of nature, and ordaining all things according to his will -- the expression of that will being the law. --Krauth-Fleming.

Syn: Destiny; lot; doom; fortune; chance. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • PARCAE — filiae Iovis ex Themide, an ex Nocte, Chao, Necessitate? etc. Deae fatales, humanae vitae stamina dispensantes. Dictae autem videntur Parcae a partu, teste Varrone, loc. cit. eo quod nascentibus hominibus bona malaque conferre censeantur. Sed… …   Hofmann J. Lexicon universale

  • Parcae — Par c[ae], n. pl. [L.] The Fates. See {Fate}, 4. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Parcae — (lat., Myth.), s. Parzen …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Parcae — PARCAE, arum, Gr. Μοῖραι, ῶν, (⇒ Tab. I.) 1 §. Namen. Ihren lateinischen Namen sollen diese Göttinnen, nach einigen, von Partus, die Geburt, haben; Varro ap. Gell. l. III. c. 16. wogegen andere ihn wahrscheinlicher von parco, ich schone,… …   Gründliches mythologisches Lexikon

  • Parcae — [pär′sē] pl.n. [L, pl. of Parca, one of the Fates, orig., a birth goddess < parere, to give birth: see PAROUS] FATES …   English World dictionary

  • Parcae — The Parcae, in Roman mythology, were the personifications of destiny (often called The Fates in English). Their Greek equivalent were the Moirae. They controlled the metaphorical thread of life of every mortal and immortal from birth to death.… …   Wikipedia

  • Parcae —    From Roman mythology, the Fates. The gods would spin the web of a person s destiny, and the Fates would carry out the gods will by laying out the web, and cutting it when the person s life was to end. The three goddesses were called Moirai.… …   The writer's dictionary of science fiction, fantasy, horror and mythology

  • Parcae — noun plural Etymology: Latin Date: 1575 fate 4 …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Parcae — /pahr see, kuy/,, sing. Parca / keuh/. the three Fates of ancient Rome, developed out of the goddess Parca by identification with the Moerae of Greek mythology. * * * …   Universalium

  • Parcae — Synonyms and related words: Atropos, Clotho, Dame Fortune, Decuma, Fata, Fates, Fortuna, Heaven, Lachesis, Moirai, Morta, Nona, Norns, Providence, Skuld, Tyche, Urdur, Verthandi, Weird Sisters, Weirds …   Moby Thesaurus