an unavoidable danger or risk, even though often foreseeable:
The job was full of hazards.
something causing unavoidable danger, peril, risk, or difficulty:
the many hazards of the big city.
the absence or lack of predictability; chance; uncertainty:
There is an element of hazard in the execution of the most painstaking plans.
Golf. a bunker, sand trap, or the like, constituting an obstacle.
the uncertainty of the result in throwing a die.
a game played with two dice, an earlier and more complicated form of craps.
Court Tennis. any of the winning openings.
(in English billiards) a stroke by which the player pockets the object ball (winning hazard) or his or her own ball after contact with another ball (losing hazard)
to offer (a statement, conjecture, etc.) with the possibility of facing criticism, disapproval, failure, or the like; venture:
He hazarded a guess, with trepidation, as to her motives in writing the article.
to put to the risk of being lost; expose to risk:
In making the investment, he hazarded all his savings.
to take or run the risk of (a misfortune, penalty, etc.):
Thieves hazard arrest.
to venture upon (anything of doubtful issue):
to hazard a dangerous encounter.
at hazard, at risk; at stake; subject to chance:
His reputation was at hazard in his new ventures.
Contemporary Examples

As the Obamas visited Buckingham Palace for tea, Prince Philip—the so-called Duke of hazard—couldn’t avoid another royal screw-up.
Prince Philip Gaffes Again The Daily Beast March 30, 2009

This is my own pop psychology 101, but I will hazard a guess that Belcher would have beaten her to death instead, or stabbed her.
Pundits Pin Blame for Murderer Jovan Belcher on Everything But Him Buzz Bissinger December 4, 2012

Whether or not the ashes caused the fire, there is no doubt they constituted a hazard.
Madonna Badger’s ‘Today’ Interview Shouldn’t Ignore Fire’s Tragic Lessons Michael Daly June 20, 2012

Maybe you’ll investigate on your own, hazard your own hypotheses, or just appreciate how little you really know about English.
Great Weekend Reads May 28, 2011

But Oceana residents have still found ways to inject the newer version, despite the hazard controls.
‘Oxyana’ Documentary at Tribeca Exposes the OxyContin Epidemic Marlow Stern April 22, 2013

Historical Examples

For the same reason, there is the element of hazard in sowing it too early in the spring.
Clovers and How to Grow Them Thomas Shaw

Games of address are not to be put upon a footing with games of hazard.’
Tales And Novels, Volume 3 (of 10) Maria Edgeworth

If you can’t do the brilliant thing, and finish the game with an eight stroke, do the safe one,—the cannon or the hazard.
That Boy Of Norcott’s Charles James Lever

I’d suggest, at a hazard guess, some place in the interior of Pennsylvania.
The Fortune Hunter Louis Joseph Vance

An author places himself uncalled before the tribunal of criticism, and solicits fame at the hazard of disgrace.
The Works of Samuel Johnson, LL.D. in Nine Volumes Samuel Johnson

exposure or vulnerability to injury, loss, evil, etc
at hazard, at risk; in danger
a thing likely to cause injury, etc
(golf) an obstacle such as a bunker, a road, rough, water, etc
chance; accident (esp in the phrase by hazard)
a gambling game played with two dice
(real tennis)

the receiver’s side of the court
one of the winning openings

(billiards) a scoring stroke made either when a ball other than the striker’s is pocketed (winning hazard) or the striker’s cue ball itself (losing hazard)
verb (transitive)
to chance or risk
to venture (an opinion, guess, etc)
to expose to danger

c.1300, from Old French hasard, hasart (12c.) “game of chance played with dice,” possibly from Spanish azar “an unfortunate card or throw at dice,” which is said to be from Arabic az-zahr (for al-zahr) “the die.” But this is doubtful because of the absence of zahr in classical Arabic dictionaries. Klein suggests Arabic yasara “he played at dice;” Arabic -s- regularly becomes Spanish -z-. The -d was added in French in confusion with the native suffix -ard. Sense evolved in French to “chances in gambling,” then “chances in life.” In English, sense of “chance of loss or harm, risk” first recorded 1540s.

“put something at stake in a game of chance,” 1520s, from Middle French hasarder “to play at gambling” (15c.), from hasard (see hazard (n.)). Related: Hazarded; hazarding.


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