1. injury or harm that reduces value or usefulness: The storm did considerable damage to the crops.
  2. damages, Law. the estimated money equivalent for detriment or injury sustained.
  3. Often damages. Informal. cost; expense; charge: What are the damages for the lubrication job on my car?

verb (used with object), dam·aged, dam·ag·ing.

  1. to cause damage to; injure or harm; reduce the value or usefulness of: He damaged the saw on a nail.

verb (used without object), dam·aged, dam·ag·ing.

  1. to become damaged: Soft wood damages easily.

pl n

  1. law money to be paid as compensation to a person for injury, loss, etc


  1. injury or harm impairing the function or condition of a person or thing
  2. loss of something desirable
  3. informal cost; expense (esp in the phrase what’s the damage?)


  1. (tr) to cause damage to
  2. (intr) to suffer damage

early 14c., from Old French damagier, from damage (see damage (n.)). Related: Damaged; damaging.


late 13c., from Old French damage (12c., Modern French dommage) “loss caused by injury,” from dam “damage,” from Latin damnum “loss, hurt, damage” (see damn).

In addition to the idioms beginning with damage

  • damage control
  • damaged goods

also see:

  • do one wrong (damage)
  • the damage
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