his·​tri·​on·​ics ˌhi-strē-ˈä-niks How to pronounce histrionics (audio)
plural in form but singular or plural in construction
: theatrical performances
: deliberate display of emotion for effect
was not moved by her histrionics

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Accompanying himself on electric guitar, his slow, bluesy version was intensely soulful and blissfully free of the flashy vocal histrionics that have have long been de rigueur for Super Bowl anthem singers. San Diego Union-Tribune, 12 Feb. 2023 But when the worst happens, the film overestimates the depths of emotional resonance earned by giving pretty much every family member their own attenuated scene of tearful histrionics. Dennis Harvey, Variety, 18 Nov. 2022 Now, most of the highlights of Jones are of his heated histrionics as the Patriots’ offensive operation falters week after week. Christopher L. Gasper, BostonGlobe.com, 21 Dec. 2022 The histrionics over election interference also neatly mirror popular concerns about the Trump administration, and should be familiar to anyone who followed the Trump-Russia scandal. Alex Shephard, The New Republic, 6 Dec. 2022 Politicians need to cut it out with the histrionics and fear-mongering when asking for donations, says Times Opinion contributor David L. Ulin. Elvia Limón, Los Angeles Times, 29 Sep. 2022 Dorow also noted that Brooks had been paying attention and taking notes without the earlier histrionics. Jim Riccioli, Journal Sentinel, 4 Oct. 2022 There weren't any snap releases from adhesion, nor was there any need for any rally-car histrionics by sawing away at the wheel. Mark Takahashi, Car and Driver, 14 Nov. 2022 As his 60th homer left the yard, Judge dropped his bat and loped around the bases without expression or histrionics. Dom Amore, Hartford Courant, 21 Sep. 2022 See More

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

Word History


see histrionic

First Known Use

1864, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of histrionics was in 1864

Dictionary Entries Near histrionics

Cite this Entry

“Histrionics.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/histrionics. Accessed 28 Mar. 2023.

Kids Definition


noun singular or plural
his·​tri·​on·​ics ˌhis-trē-ˈän-iks How to pronounce histrionics (audio)
: theatrical performances
: exaggerated display of feeling

More from Merriam-Webster on histrionics

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

Challenging Standardized Test Words, Vol. 2

  • a pencil broken in half on top of a test answer sheet
  • The business’s new computer system proved not to be a panacea.
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Solve today's spelling word game by finding as many words as you can with using just 7 letters. Longer words score more points.

Can you make 12 words with 7 letters?