The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Emergency \E*mer"gen*cy\, n.; pl. Emergencies. [See
1. Sudden or unexpected appearance; an unforeseen occurrence;
a sudden occasion.
Most our rarities have been found out by casual
2. An unforeseen occurrence or combination of circumstances
which calls for immediate action or remedy; pressing
To whom she might her doubts propose,
On all emergencies that rose. --Swift.
A safe counselor in most difficult emergencies.
Syn: Crisis; conjuncture; exigency; pinch; strait; necessity.