Simple Definition of agony
: extreme mental or physical pain
Examples of agony in a sentence
She was in terrible agony after breaking her leg.
The medicine relieves the agony of muscle cramps very quickly.
It was agony to watch him suffer like that.
Did You Know?
In Ancient Greece, a public gathering was called agon. Since the Greeks placed a high value on sports and athletic competition, there were almost always athletic events at gatherings on festival days. The struggle to win the prize in such contests came to be called agonia. This term came also to be used for any difficult physical struggle and then for the pain that went with it—physical or mental. Our English word agony, meaning “intense pain of mind or body,” thus comes from a word that meant a happy celebration.
Origin and Etymology of agony
Middle English agonie, from Late Latin agonia, from Greek agōnia struggle, anguish, from agōn gathering, contest for a prize, from agein to lead, celebrate — more at agent
First Known Use: 14th century
Synonym Discussion of agony
AGONY Defined for Kids
Definition of agony for Students
: great physical pain or emotional distress
Medical Definition of agony
1: intense pain of mind or body
2: the struggle that precedes death
Seen and Heard
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