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mayhem
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mayhem


A food fight accompanied the general mayhem in the cafeteria.
  a state of chaotic disorder

or:

in law:  the willful and unlawful crippling or mutilation of a person
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mayhem mayhems
Notes:
Mayhem is frequently used to describe a violent situation, but it is also not uncommonly used to describe a situation in which the disorder is humorous.
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Samples:
  • A food fight accompanied the general mayhem in the cafeteria.
  • City officials are concerned that celebrations will turn to mayhem if the championship is won.
  • charged with attempted murder and aggravated mayhem
  • The seconds stretch, each as long as an hour as I gaze at the mayhem of the battlefield.
    Sabaa Tahir  --  An Ember in the Ashes

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  • If they are, hopefully they’ll just hear the conversation and assume this is normal morning mayhem, and not think twice.
    Neal Shusterman  --  Unwind
  • Complete mayhem?
    Kiera Cass  --  The Elite
  • This is mayhem.
    Kiera Cass  --  The One
  • Ten days of mayhem.
    Rick Yancey  --  The 5th Wave
  • At first it was mayhem: we bounded in, grabbing wildly as the pigeons took off.
    Ransom Riggs  --  Hollow City
  • Albert looked them over for a moment and then, after a quick glance toward the crest where Angeline was now lying in a state of peaceful relaxation, he flung himself in among the tired pups, sprawled on his back, and invited mayhem.
    Farley Mowat  --  Never Cry Wolf

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  • Soldiers still lob grenades from inside retreating trucks, but the building is already on fire and the grenades only seem to add noise to the mayhem.
    Susan Ee  --  Angelfall
  • There followed a flurry of introductions, desk-choosing, and general mayhem, during which the Executives watched the children very intently, as if they didn’t quite trust them not to bolt from the room or start a brawl.
    Trenton Lee Stewart  --  The Mysterious Benedict Society
  • Invariably, lines of boxcars stood waiting there, dun-colored backdrop to blurred, confounding tableaux of cruelty, mayhem and madness.
    William Styron  --  Sophie’s Choice
  • But it’s merely a civilized thing to do, having lunch with an ex-husband in a comradely way: a good coda to all that smashed crockery and mayhem.
    Margaret Atwood  --  Cat’s Eye
  • And tired or not, he looked entirely capable of further mayhem, should the need arise.
    Diana Gabaldon  --  Outlander
  • It was that crazy backstage theater mayhem where sweaty actors stand euphoric while people come worship them for a few seconds.
    R.J. Palacio  --  Wonder
  • I will never forget the sudden emotional mayhem.
    Khaled Hosseini  --  And The Mountains Echoed
  • So all you need to do is cause enough mayhem to keep Snape busy for five minutes or so.
    J.K. Rowling  --  Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
  • The crowd: mayhem.
    Markus Zusak  --  The Book Thief
  • It’s mayhem.
    Suzanne Collins  --  The Hunger Games
  • The mayhem spread from the gangs to the rest of the neighborhood.
    Wes Moore  --  The Other Wes Moore
  • It would sow mayhem and anarchy.
    Christopher Paolini  --  Eragon
  • Lies, who’s all thumbs, gets lost in the mayhem.
    Anne Frank  --  The Diary of a Young Girl
  • This aquatic mayhem didn’t last long, but while it did, the sea bubbled and boiled, fish jumped and jaws worked hard.
    Yann Martel  --  Life of Pi
  • Redd strolled through the mayhem of the battle unharmed.
    Frank Beddor  --  The Looking Glass Wars
  • Beyond the threshold was absolute mayhem.
    Dan Brown  --  Angels & Demons
  • A large percentage would make it, probably causing mayhem in their revelry.
    Eoin Colfer  --  Artemis Fowl
  • The engines soon stalled the Varden’s advance, sowing mayhem wherever they aimed.
    Christopher Paolini  --  Eldest
  • It was an undisguised terrorist operation, dedicated to mayhem and murder, especially of us.
    Marcus Luttrell  --  Lone Survivor
  • ’But we’ve always stopped short of causing real mayhem,’ said Fred.
    J.K. Rowling  --  Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
  • Others who could co-exist without the constant mayhem.
    Stephenie Meyer  --  Eclipse
  • CHAPTER FORTY MOVIE COMPANY CAUSES MAYHEM IN SCENIC OJAI The latest in a long line of horror movies from Enoch Studios caused traffic mayhem and more than a little confusion in downtown Ojai yesterday.
    Micheal Scott  --  The Alchemyst
  • Murder and mayhem are the life and soul of revolution.
    John Gardner  --  Grendel
  • Cedric knows that the surrounding mayhem is not something he and his mother need to talk much about.
    Ron Suskind  --  A Hope in the Unseen
  • The Seekers stood as a mighty shield, and the souls of this world were thrice-over indebted to them: for the safety they had carved out of the mayhem, for the risk of the final death that they faced willingly every day, and for the new bodies they continued to provide.
    Stephenie Meyer  --  The Host
  • For all these deaths and maimings to amount to something deeper than the violence of the Road Runner cartoon, the violence has to have some meaning beyond mere mayhem.
    Thomas C. Foster  --  How to Read Literature Like a Professor
  • Through the mayhem of cheers and relief, Mack could hear Emil’s voice, like the repetitious chant of a rosary, whispering again and again, "I am so sorry …. I am so sorry …. I am so sorry."
    William P. Young  --  The Shack
  • But my mother would never have understood why, in some small way, the mayhem of Delia’s business would appeal to me.
    Sarah Dessen  --  The Truth About Forever
  • We will wander underneath them and commit mild acts of mayhem.
    Laurie Halse Anderson  --  Speak
  • The air carried cries and shouts, the sound of screaming, names called on the wind—and there were the cries of demons as well, howls of mayhem and delight, shrieks that pierced the human ear like pain.
    Cassandra Clare  --  City of Glass
  • I thought we were trying to avoid tears and violence and mayhem.
    James Patterson  --  School’s Out - Forever
  • Reading Greek mythology had left him, he told me, with a sense of the antiquity of murder and mayhem, but no real explanations.
    Tracy Kidder  --  Strength in What Remains
  • Every half hour brought an escalation in the mayhem outside.
    Dave Eggers  --  Zeitoun
  • I lost Casey in the blur of perfume and general mayhem, then found her waiting for me by a planter full of ferns.
    Sarah Dessen  --  That Summer
  • Sophie Mol inspected the smelly mayhem with clinical detachment.
    Arundhati Roy  --  The God of Small Things
  • So they might be a little tired of the fear, pain, and mayhem, but still… "Iggy?"
    James Patterson  --  Saving the World and Other Extreme Sports
  • He touched a comparatively sedate quartet of figures painted on the highest balcony, looking down calmly on the mayhem below them.
    Stephenie Meyer  --  Twilight
  • Every assignment there—murder, mayhem, ribbon cuttings, courtroom drama, meetings and more mayhem—was an education.
    Steve Lopez  --  The Soloist
  • I quickly ran back toward the mayhem that Alder had caused.
    D.J. Machale  --  The Merchant of Death
  • She smiled more, they sometimes commented, and even her children occasionally noticed that she took walks after dinner or spent an hour now and then lingering in the tub, ignoring the mayhem around her.
    Nicholas Sparks  --  Nights in Rodanthe
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Associated words [difficulty]:   mayhem [3]
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