Horrendous vs Abysmal - What's the difference?

horrendous | abysmal |

As adjectives the difference between horrendous and abysmal

is that horrendous is extremely bad; awful; terrible while abysmal is (now|rare) pertaining to, or resembling an abyss; unending; profound; fathomless; immeasurable .




(en adjective)
  • Extremely bad; awful; terrible.
  • * There was horrendous carnage at the scene of the plane crash.
  • * My journey to work this morning was horrendous !
  • * {{quote-magazine, date=2012-03
  • , author=William E. Carter, Merri Sue Carter , title=The British Longitude Act Reconsidered , volume=100, issue=2, page=87 , magazine= citation , passage=But was it responsible governance to pass the Longitude Act without other efforts to protect British seamen? Or might it have been subterfuge—a disingenuous attempt to shift attention away from the realities of their life at sea. Conditions were horrendous aboard most British naval vessels at the time. Scurvy and other diseases ran rampant, killing more seamen each year than all other causes combined, including combat.}}


    * awful, horrific, terrible, dreadful




    (en adjective)
  • (now, rare) Pertaining to, or resembling an abyss; unending; profound; fathomless; immeasurable.
  • * Carlyle
  • Geology gives one the same abysmal extent of time that astronomy does of space.
  • (figurative, colloquial) Bottomless; extremely bad.
  • * {{quote-news, year=2012
  • , date=June 9 , author=Owen Phillips , title=Euro 2012: Netherlands 0-1 Denmark , work=BBC Sport citation , page= , passage=Robben curled an effort against the foot of the post from the edge of the box after being gifted the ball by an abysmal clearance from keeper Stephan Andersen.}}

    Usage notes

    * Nouns to which "abysmal" is often applied: ignorance, record, performance, poverty, conditions, quality, perplexity, result, and failure.