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From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishcataclysmcat‧a‧clys‧m /ˈkætəklɪzəm/ noun [countable]  DISASTER literary a violent or sudden event or change, such as a serious flood or earthquakecataclysmic /ˌkætəˈklɪzmɪk◂/ adjective
Examples from the Corpus
cataclysmDo these eruptions act as a safety valve or will they lead to a cataclysm?In short, there never was a series of divine cataclysms, and the existence of mankind on earth was relatively short.The seventh seal triggers seven trumpets, which introduce various additional heavenly and earthly cataclysms.Geophysicists have examined these continental scars to tell the story of cataclysms that struck the earth long ago.The continent approached the cataclysm of 1914 with a formal apparatus for the conduct of international relations which now seems strikingly small.Britain was totally unprepared for the cataclysm of the Franco-Prussian War late in 1870 and still less for its outcome.Time was no longer associated just with cataclysms and festivals but rather with everyday life.
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