Examples of ironic in a Sentence
She has an ironic sense of humor.
It's ironic that computers break down so often, since they're meant to save people time.
It is ironic that the robber's car crashed into a police station.
Recent Examples of ironic from the Web
The feuding cousins are extremely combative, making statements so cruel and yet ironic that the audience can't help but laugh while being fearful that the cousins won't start to physically beat each other.
The rigidity with which this guideline is observed can seem ironic.
In an ironic twist, the current president is a woman: Nobel laureate Elizabeth Blackburn, who discovered the molecular nature of telomeres and who co-discovered telomerase, was hired in November 2015 and began work in January 2016.
Ironic, that Trump, who was so obsessed with Hillary Clinton's emails, is now politically wounded by his namesake's email chain.
The situation is somewhat ironic: the heart of the computer, which itself is the symbol of mechanization, is made by the age-old kind of labor that produced brocades and carpets.
Mulholland’s attitude toward show business, ironic, mocking, appalled, has already been established.
That mainstream women’s magazines are selling the stars of social media culture back to the young women who built that culture is ironic.
Ironic, considering that Graham himself walked away with a 1991 Ig Nobel for the repository.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ironic.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Considerable thought is given to what events constitute “true” irony, and the dictionary is often called upon to supply an answer. Here are the facts about how the word irony is used.
Irony has two formal uses that are not as common in general prose as its more casual uses. One refers to Socratic irony—a method of revealing an opponent’s ignorance by pretending to be ignorant yourself and asking probing questions. The other refers to dramatic irony or tragic irony—an incongruity between the situation in a drama and the words used by the characters that only the audience can see. Socratic irony is a tool used in debating; dramatic irony is what happens when the audience realizes that Romeo and Juliet’s plans will go awry.
The third, and debated, use of irony regards what’s called situational irony. Situational irony involves a striking reversal of what is expected or intended: a person sidesteps a pothole to avoid injury and in doing so steps into another pothole and injures themselves. Critics claim the word irony and ironic as they are generally used (as in, “Isn’t it ironic that you called just as I was planning to call you?”) can only apply to situational irony, and uses like the one above are more properly called coincidence.
The historical record shows that irony and ironic have been used imprecisely for almost 100 years at least, and often to refer to coincidence. This 1939 quote from F. Scott Fitzgerald is typical: "It is an ironic thought that the last picture job I took—against my better judgment—yielded me five thousand dollars five hundred and cost over four thousand in medical attention." Is this true situational irony? It’s debatable.
The word irony has come to be applied to events that are merely curious or coincidental, and while some feel this is an incorrect use of the word, it is merely a new one.
First Known Use of ironic
Synonym Discussion of ironic
IRONIC Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of ironic for English Language Learners
: using words that mean the opposite of what you really think especially in order to be funny
: strange or funny because something (such as a situation) is different from what you expected
IRONIC Defined for Kids
Definition of ironic for Students
: relating to, containing, or showing irony It was ironic that the robber's car crashed into the police station.
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