Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

pitiful

play
adjective piti·ful \ˈpi-ti-fəl\

Simple Definition of pitiful

  • : deserving or causing feelings of pity or sympathy

  • : causing feelings of dislike or disgust by not being enough or not being good enough

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of pitiful

  1. 1 archaic :  full of pity :  compassionate

  2. 2 a :  deserving or arousing pity or commiseration b :  exciting pitying contempt (as by meanness or inadequacy) <pitiful wages>

pitifully

play \-f(ə-)lē\ adverb

pitifulness

play \-fəl-nəs\ noun

Examples of pitiful in a sentence

  1. She made a pitiful attempt to complete her work.

  2. <that piece of junk is a pitiful excuse for a car>



14th Century

First Known Use of pitiful

14th century


PITIFUL Defined for Kids

pitiful

play
adjective piti·ful \ˈpi-ti-fəl\

Definition of pitiful for Students

  1. 1 :  deserving or causing feelings of pity <a pitiful sight>

  2. 2 :  deserving or causing a feeling of dislike or disgust by not being sufficient or good enough <a pitiful excuse>

pitifully

\-fə-lē, -flē\ adverb




Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up pitiful? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

different from the usual or normal

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

alphabet-pasta-spelling-help

Which is the correct spelling?

acommodate accommodate acommadate accomodate
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ