doleful

adjective
dole·​ful | \ ˈdōl-fəl How to pronounce doleful (audio) \

Definition of doleful

1 : full of grief : cheerless a doleful face
2 : expressing grief : sad a doleful melody
3 : causing grief or affliction a doleful loss

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Other Words from doleful

dolefully \ ˈdōl-​fə-​lē How to pronounce dolefully (audio) \ adverb
dolefulness noun

Examples of doleful in a Sentence

The girl had a doleful look on her face. You sounded so doleful about your future that night.
Recent Examples on the Web And with some reason: While the Eighth unfolds with doleful sweetness, his other symphonies can be chuggingly listless. Zachary Woolfe, New York Times, "Philip Glass Is Too Busy to Care About Legacy," 7 Nov. 2019 The doleful pessimist would also point to the rise of nationalism. Akshat Rathi, Quartz, "Are we finally at a tipping point on climate action?," 26 Sep. 2019 Frampton, of course, had funny stories to tell, some of it in Wyman’s doleful voice. Ben Crandell, sun-sentinel.com, "Review/Photos: Peter Frampton makes a powerful final statement in West Palm Beach," 7 Sep. 2019 The repeating beat and words provided a doleful soundtrack for the encampment, where pain came from a life marked by trauma and disregard. Los Angeles Times, "Broadway Place’s homeless residents were promised homes. Had the city forgotten them?," 15 Aug. 2019 There's more sadness to Kapadia's film than anticipated, and Maradona is on hand to comment on what was going on behind his younger self's often doleful expression. Thomas Page, CNN, "Sex, drugs and soccer: Diego Maradona film shines light on Napoli years," 12 June 2019 These movies extend his doleful comedies across decades, cultures and nations, putting his words in the mouths of Australian ranchers, Japanese schoolgirls, French auteurs and jobbing New York actors. Alexis Soloski, New York Times, "‘The Seagull’ Brings Chekhov’s Doleful Comedy to Cinemas," 4 May 2018 The doleful arias, bickering duets and mocking trios are delivered at a relatively brisk tempo — a wise strategy for a work in which the small talk is circular, the gags repetitive and the grievances rehashed ad nauseam. Charles Mcnulty, latimes.com, "A revelatory Denzel Washington in 'The Iceman Cometh'," 10 May 2018 The doleful voice of the late singer and poet Leonard Cohen issued from one of maybe 30 speakers piled on the instrument and arrayed about the room. Charles Desmarais, San Francisco Chronicle, "In the key of Leonard Cohen: ‘Poetry Machine’ brings late singer’s works to life," 4 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'doleful.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of doleful

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for doleful

see dole entry 1

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Time Traveler for doleful

Time Traveler

The first known use of doleful was in the 13th century

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Statistics for doleful

Last Updated

27 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Doleful.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dolefully. Accessed 7 December 2019.

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More Definitions for doleful

doleful

adjective
How to pronounce doleful (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of doleful

: very sad

doleful

adjective
dole·​ful | \ ˈdōl-fəl How to pronounce doleful (audio) \

Kids Definition of doleful

: very sad a doleful day

Other Words from doleful

dolefully \ -​fə-​lē \ adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on doleful

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for doleful

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with doleful

Spanish Central: Translation of doleful

Nglish: Translation of doleful for Spanish Speakers

Comments on doleful

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