Definition of hamartia
hamartia was our Word of the Day on 09/19/2011. Hear the podcast!
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Did You Know?
Harmartia arose from the Greek verb hamartanein, meaning "to miss the mark" or "to err." Aristotle introduced the term in the Poetics to describe the error of judgment which ultimately brings about the tragic hero's downfall. As you can imagine, the word is most often found in literary criticism. However, news writers occasionally employ the word when discussing the unexplainable misfortune or missteps of übercelebrities regarded as immortal gods and goddesses before being felled by their own shortcomings.
Origin and Etymology of hamartia
Greek, from hamartanein to miss the mark, err
First Known Use: 1913See Words from the same year
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