So, I'm writing a story. I have a part where I describe a family who has had a lot of misfortunes; the mother got killed, the father got sick, etc. I want to follow it up with a statement when another tragedy happens and I want a sentence it like this:

"The already [insert word] here family once again receives a visit from misfortune as..."

I think "unfortunate" just wouldn't cut it.

  • 2
    You might want to use "long-suffering" -- showing patience and fortitude in the face of trouble/misfortune. (Though it can sometimes be read as implying that the misfortune was caused by someone else, such as a spouse.) "Stoic" is another option, without the implication as to cause.
    – Hot Licks
    Jul 22, 2015 at 2:18

4 Answers 4



Dictionary.com: to surround or beset, as with troubles

Cambridge: having so many difficulties that you feel as if you are being attacked from every direction

Merriam-Webster: to cause constant or repeated trouble for (a person, business, etc.)

The already beleaguered family once again receives a visit from misfortune as...



noun |ˈtɔːmɛnt| [ mass noun ] severe physical or mental suffering: their deaths have left both families in torment.

(OED, via the Apple Dictionary App)


I'd suggest wounded or battered in this case. Since your second half of the sentence sets up the image of being visited (and hurt) by misfortune, it would make sense to keep the image in mind in the first half.


You might think the situation is downright Shakespearean:

star-crossed -

adj. dogged by ill luck; destined to misfortune

and indeed, this leads to a good number of synonyms to choose from: ill-starred, cursed, luckless, misfortunate, bedeviled, hapless.

And if you like Biblical instead, perhaps forsaken.

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