1

melancholy

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noun mel·an·choly \ˈme-lən-ˌkä-lē\

Definition of melancholy

plural

melancholies

  1. 1 a :  an abnormal state attributed to an excess of black bile and characterized by irascibility or depression b :  black bile c :  melancholia

  2. 2 a :  depression of spirits :  dejection b :  a pensive mood

Examples of melancholy in a sentence

  1. <the bleakness of winter sometimes gives me cause for melancholy>

Origin and Etymology of melancholy

Middle English malencolie, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin melancholia, from Greek, from melan- + cholē bile — more at gall


First Known Use: 14th century


2

melancholy

play
adjective mel·an·choly \ˈme-lən-ˌkä-lē\

Definition of melancholy

  1. 1 a :  suggestive or expressive of sadness or depression of mind or spirit <sang in a melancholy voice> b :  causing or tending to cause sadness or depression of mind or spirit :  dismal <a melancholy thought>

  2. 2 a :  depressed in spirits :  dejected, sad b :  pensive

Examples of melancholy in a sentence

  1. A melancholy lesson of advancing years is the realization that you can't make old friends. —Christopher Hitchens, Harper's, June 1999

  2. He has a snarled mop of spiky black hair, melancholy circles around his eyes, and a tiny Cupid's-bow mouth. —Pauline Kael, New Yorker, 17 Dec. 1990

  3. I see your mournful party in my mind's eye under every varying circumstance of the day; … the efforts to talk, the frequent summons to melancholy orders and cares, and poor Edward, restless in misery, going from one room to the other … —Jane Austen, letter, 24 Oct. 1808

  4. She was in a melancholy mood.

  5. He became quiet and melancholy as the hours slowly passed.

Origin and Etymology of melancholy

(see 1melancholy)


First Known Use: 14th century


MELANCHOLY Defined for English Language Learners

1

melancholy

play
noun mel·an·choly \ˈme-lən-ˌkä-lē\

Definition of melancholy for English Language Learners

  • : a sad mood or feeling


2

melancholy

play
adjective mel·an·choly \ˈme-lən-ˌkä-lē\

Definition of melancholy for English Language Learners

  • : feeling or showing sadness : very unhappy


MELANCHOLY Defined for Kids

1

melancholy

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adjective mel·an·choly \ˈme-lən-ˌkä-lē\

Definition of melancholy for Students

  1. :  sad 1 <I'll be melancholy if you go.>


2

melancholy

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noun mel·an·choly

Definition of melancholy for Students

  1. :  a sad or gloomy mood


Medical Dictionary

melancholy

play
noun mel·an·choly \ˈmel-ən-ˌkäl-ē\

Medical Definition of melancholy

plural

melancholies

  1. 1a:  an abnormal state attributed to an excess of black bile and characterized by irascibility or depressionb:  black bilec:  melancholia

  2. 2:  depression or dejection of spirits

melancholy

adjective


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