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fell (adj) cruel and violent (sudden and all at one time).
A fell deed is a cruel deed. The fell attack of a tiger is the cruel and deadly attack of the tiger, attacking and killing its prey in just one blow. The fell swoop of a bird like an eagle or a hawk is its flying down swiftly and carrying away its prey. 'The fell grip of circumstances' is the cruel effect of adverse circumstances in which a person is caught. A fell disease is a cruel disease.
- No cure has so far been developed to free human beings from the fell grip of fatal diseases like cancer and AIDS.
- In a fell attack the bandits attacking the village killed most of the villagers, including women and children, and carried away a lot of their belongings.