en·​co·​mi·​um | \en-ˈkō-mē-əm \
plural encomiums also encomia\ en-​ˈkō-​mē-​ə \

Definition of encomium 

: glowing and warmly enthusiastic praise also : an expression of this

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Choose the Right Synonym for encomium

encomium, eulogy, panegyric, tribute, citation mean a formal expression of praise. encomium implies enthusiasm and warmth in praising a person or a thing. received encomiums from literary critics eulogy applies to a prepared speech or writing extolling the virtues and services of a person. delivered the eulogy at the funeral service panegyric suggests an elaborate often poetic compliment. her lyrical memoir was a panegyric to her mentor tribute implies deeply felt praise conveyed either through words or through a significant act. the concert was a musical tribute to the early jazz masters citation applies to the formal praise of a person offered in a military dispatch or in awarding an honorary degree. earned a citation for bravery

Did You Know?

The love of praise, howe're concealed by art / Reigns more or less, and glows in every heart. British writer Edward Young knew how much people love to hear praise - and so did the ancient Greeks, the originators of "encomium." They formalized that particular expression of praise and named it an "enkōmion," from their terms en, meaning "in," and kōmos, meaning "celebration." The original encomiums were eulogies or panegyrics, often ones prepared in honor of a victor in the Olympics. The term was later broadened to refer to any laudatory ode. Since then encomiums have been written praising everyone from Julius Caesar to Elton John, although not all have been entirely serious - one of the best known is the satirical "Moriae Encomium" ("Praise of Folly") by Erasmus.

Examples of encomium in a Sentence

the encomiums bestowed on a teacher at her retirement ceremonies

Recent Examples on the Web

But agreeing to write a Trump encomium for Time is a whole other thing. Chris Cillizza, CNN, "Ted Cruz's embarrassing ode to Donald Trump is why people hate politicians," 19 Apr. 2018 More problematic are the amateurish musical choices and the breathless encomiums on the soundtrack. Ty Burr, BostonGlobe.com, "Legends of noodledom, with an emphasis on slurpability," 4 Apr. 2018 Garth Brooks, Vince Gill and Amy Grant, Zac Brown Band, the late Donna Summer and Eagles are among the artists contributing to A Tribute to Dan Fogelberg, a long-gestating encomium to the singer-songwriter. Melinda Newman, Billboard, "Garth Brooks, Eagles, Zac Brown Band & More Honor Dan Fogelberg on New Tribute Album: Premiere," 15 Nov. 2017 The most recent grist for this assessment comes from Eric Lax, an Allen acolyte, whose fourth book on the director, Start to Finish: Woody Allen and the Art of Moviemaking, is essentially an indictment framed as an encomium. Christopher Orr, The Atlantic, "The Remarkable Laziness of Woody Allen," 7 Sep. 2017 Clinton’s encomium ignored his mentor’s segregationism. Deroy Murdock, National Review, "Monuments to Racist Democrats Should Enrage Leftist Mobs," 30 Aug. 2017 There have been touching encomiums to Cornell’s life and legacy in The New York Times, Newsweek, and elsewhere. Ryu Spaeth, New Republic, "Was Grunge Good?," 25 May 2017 Comey’s congressional testimony, in 2007, about the confrontation raised his public profile, earning him encomiums from both parties. Peter Elkind, The New Yorker, "James Comey’s Conspicuous Independence," 11 May 2017 And in an encomium to I. M. Pei, who will turn 100 in April, written by the architecture critic Paul Goldberger, who is a contributor to Vanity Fair. Penelope Green, New York Times, "Architectural Digest Undergoes Renovations for the Social Media Age," 8 Mar. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'encomium.' 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 encomium

1567, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for encomium

Latin, from Greek enkōmion, from en in + kōmos revel, celebration

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The first known use of encomium was in 1567

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