Dis"mal (?), a. [Formerly a noun; e. g., "I trow it was in the dismalle." Chaucer. Of uncertain origin; but perh. (as suggested by Skeat) from OF. disme, F. dime, tithe, the phrase dismal day properly meaning, the day when tithes must be paid. See Dime.]
Fatal; ill-omened; unlucky.
An ugly fiend more foul than dismal day.
Gloomy to the eye or ear; sorrowful and depressing to the feelings; foreboding; cheerless; dull; dreary; as, a dismal outlook; dismal stories; a dismal place.
Full well the busy whisper, circling round,
Convey'd the dismal tidings when he frowned.
A dismal description of an English November.
Syn. -- Dreary; lonesome; gloomy; dark; ominous; ill-boding; fatal; doleful; lugubrious; funereal; dolorous; calamitous; sorrowful; sad; joyless; melancholy; unfortunate; unhappy.
© Webster 1913.