What is upset?

  • (noun): An improbable and unexpected victory.
    Example: "The biggest upset since David beat Goliath"
    Synonyms: overturn
    See also — Additional definitions below


An upset occurs in a competition, frequently in electoral politics or sports, when the party popularly expected to win (the favorite), is defeated by an underdog whom the majority expects to lose, defying the conventional wisdom. The underdog then becomes a giant-killer.

Read more about Upset.

Some articles on upset:

Spite (sentiment)
... To spite is to intentionally annoy, hurt, or upset ... that it is clear that the person is delivering them just to annoy, hurt, or upset ... When the intent to annoy, hurt, or upset is shown subtly, behavior is considered catty ...
Upset - Origin
... of the New York Times databases to trace the usage of the verb to upset and the noun upset ... theory of the term's origin, namely that it was first used after the Thoroughbred racehorse Upset became the only horse to defeat Man o' War in 1919 ... The meaning of the word "upset" has long included "an overthrowing or overturn of ideas, plans, etc." (see OED definition 6b), from which the sports definition ...
Best Upset ESPY Award
... The Best Upset ESPY Award was conferred once each in 2004 and 2005 and annually since 2007 to the team in a regular season or playoff game or series contested ...
Aircraft Upset
... Aircraft upset is a dangerous condition in aircraft operations which may result in the loss of control of the aircraft, and sometimes the total loss of the aircraft itself ... NASA Aviation Safety Program defines upset prevention and upset recovery as to prevent loss-of-control accidents due to aircraft upset after ...
Bottom 10
... a normally strong football team which found itself on the wrong end of an upset the prior week an example would be the September 7, 2011 Bottom 10, which featured Oregon State at the #5 ... as "bad weather" (a reference to three games, including the South Florida upset of Notre Dame, being delayed or prematurely shortened by severe weather) and "TCU's ...

More definitions of "upset":

  • (noun): The act of disturbing the mind or body.
    Example: "His carelessness could have caused an ecological upset"
    Synonyms: derangement, overthrow
  • (verb): Move deeply.
    Example: "This book upset me"
    Synonyms: disturb, trouble
  • (adj): Having been turned so that the bottom is no longer the bottom.
    Example: "The upset pitcher of milk"
    Synonyms: overturned, upturned
  • (noun): Condition in which there is a disturbance of normal functioning.
    Synonyms: disorder
  • (verb): Form metals with a swage.
    Synonyms: swage
  • (verb): Defeat suddenly and unexpectedly.
    Example: "The foreign team upset the local team"
  • (noun): The act of upsetting something.
    Example: "He was badly bruised by the upset of his sled at a high speed"
    Synonyms: overturn, turnover
  • (adj): Used of an unexpected defeat of a team favored to win.
    Example: "The Bills' upset victory over the Houston Oilers"
  • (adj): Mildly physically distressed.
    Example: "An upset stomach"
  • (adj): Thrown into a state of disarray or confusion.
    Example: "With everything so upset"
    Synonyms: broken, confused, disordered
  • (verb): Disturb the balance or stability of.
    Example: "The hostile talks upset the peaceful relations between the two countries"
  • (noun): An unhappy and worried mental state.
    Example: "She didn't realize the upset she caused me"
    Synonyms: disturbance, perturbation
  • (noun): A tool used to thicken or spread (the end of a bar or a rivet etc.) by forging or hammering or swaging.
    Synonyms: swage

Famous quotes containing the word upset:

    Ask a wise man to dinner and he’ll upset everyone by his gloomy silence or tiresome questions. Invite him to a dance and you’ll have a camel prancing about. Haul him off to a public entertainment and his face will be enough to spoil the people’s entertainment.
    Desiderius Erasmus (c. 1466–1536)

    This little upset across the water doesn’t mean anything. Threatened men live long and threatened wars never occur.
    —H.G. (Herbert George)

    I tell people that when my son was this age, all of the things he did that really aggravated me and got me upset were things that, from the standpoint of healthy child development, I wanted him to do. I just didn’t want him to do them to me, or at those particular moments!
    Lawrence Kutner (20th century)