1. Literally, a befalling; an event that takes place without one's foresight or expectation; an undesigned, sudden, and unexpected event; chance; contingency; often, an undesigned and unforeseen occurrence of an afflictive or unfortunate character; a casualty; a mishap; as, to die by an accident. "Of moving accidents by flood and field." (Shak) "Thou cam'st not to thy place by accident: It is the very place God meant for thee." (Trench)
5. Any accidental property, fact, or relation; an accidental or nonessential; as, beauty is an accident. "This accident, as I call it, of Athens being situated some miles from the sea." (J. P. Mahaffy)
Origin: F. Accident, fr. L. Accidens, -dentis, p. Pr. Of accidere to happen; ad + cadere to fall. See Cadence, Case.
(01 Mar 1998)
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