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accident of birth
Any and all particulars surrounding one's birth (physical characteristics, social background, and even nationality) that are considered a result of parentage and the specific circumstances of birth, and are therefore entirely out of one's control. My poverty when I was young was merely an accident of birth; through hard work and determination, I was able to overcome it and lead a successful life.
A mistake or unplanned event that results in a beneficial outcome or pleasant surprise. The creation of penicillin was a happy accident that resulted from Alexander Fleming's discovery of mold growing in his agar plates.
Accidents will happen.
Prov. It is impossible to completely prevent things from going wrong. (Often used to console someone who has made a mistake or caused an accident.) Child: Mommy, I spilled grape juice all over the carpet! Mother: Don't cry, honey. Accidents will happen. Jill: I'm so embarrassed. I was just tapping on your window to wake you up. I didn't mean to break it. Jane: Accidents will happen.
have an accident
1. to experience something that was not foreseen or intended. Traffic is very bad. I almost had an accident. Drive carefully. Try to avoid having an accident.
2. Euph. to lose control of the bowels or the bladder. (Usually said of a young child.) "Oh, Ann," cried Mother. "It looks like you've had an accident!" Mother asked Billy to go to the bathroom before they left so that he wouldn't have an accident in the car.
an accident waiting to happen
a very dangerous situation in which an accident is very likely The speed that people drive along this road, it's an accident waiting to happen.
(whether) by accident or design
whether intended to be this way or not The system, whether by accident or design, benefits people who live in the cities more than people who live in the country.
more by accident than (by) design
because of luck and not because of skill I kicked the ball and, more by accident than design, it found its way into the net.
accidents will happen
something that you say in order to make someone feel less guilty when they have just damaged something that does not belong to them Oh well, accidents will happen. I can always buy another bowl.
be a chapter of accidents(British & Australian formal)
to be a series of unpleasant events The whole trip was a chapter of accidents.
a happy accident
a pleasant situation or event that is not planned or intended We never planned to have a third child - it was a happy accident.