Date: 1200-1300
Language: Old French
Origin: meschief 'something bad that happens', from mes- ( MIS-) + chief 'head, end'


1 [uncountable] bad behaviour, especially by children, that causes trouble or damage, but no serious harm:
Now run along, and don't get into mischief.
They've got enough toys to keep them out of mischief for a while.
If you can't see Nick, you can be sure he's up to some mischief (=behaving badly and causing trouble or damage).
2 [uncountable] the pleasure or enjoyment of playing tricks on people or embarrassing them:
Kiki's eyes were bright with mischief.

make mischief

informal to deliberately cause quarrels or unfriendly feelings between people
make mischief between
I didn't want to make mischief between them.

do yourself a mischief

British English informal to injure yourself slightly:
If you try to lift that box, you'll do yourself a mischief.
5 [uncountable] formal damage or harm that is done to someone or to their property:
The jury cleared him of the charge of criminal mischief.

Dictionary results for "mischief"
Dictionary pictures of the day
Do you know what each of these is called?
What is the word for picture 1? What is the word for picture 2? What is the word for picture 3? What is the word for picture 4?
Click on any of the pictures above to find out what it is called.