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The act of surprising or the state of being surprised.


(sərˈpraɪ zəl)

1. the act of surprising.
2. the state of being surprised.
3. a surprise.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.surprisal - the act of surprising someone
disruption, perturbation - the act of causing disorder
References in classic literature ?
As to the moderation of this war party, they considered it assumed, to put them off their guard against some more favorable opportunity for a surprisal. It was determined, therefore, not to await their return, but to abandon, with all speed, this dangerous neighborhood.
Go therefore, half this day as friend with friend Converse with ADAM, in what Bowre or shade Thou find'st him from the heat of Noon retir'd, To respit his day-labour with repast, Or with repose; and such discourse bring on, As may advise him of his happie state, Happiness in his power left free to will, Left to his own free Will, his Will though free, Yet mutable; whence warne him to beware He swerve not too secure: tell him withall His danger, and from whom, what enemie Late falln himself from Heav'n, is plotting now The fall of others from like state of bliss; By violence, no, for that shall be withstood, But by deceit and lies; this let him know, Least wilfully transgressing he pretend Surprisal, unadmonisht, unforewarnd.
He drew the listening savages round him by his nervous eloquence; taunted them with recitals of past wrongs and insults; drew glowing pictures of triumphs and trophies within their reach; recounted tales of daring and romantic enterprise, of secret marchings, covert lurkings, midnight surprisals, sackings, burnings, plunderings, scalpings; together with the triumphant return, and the feasting and rejoicing of the victors.