mourn·​ful | \ˈmȯrn-fəl \

Definition of mournful 

1 : expressing sorrow : sorrowful

2 : full of sorrow : sad

3 : causing sorrow or melancholy : gloomy

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Other Words from mournful

mournfully \ -​fə-​lē \ adverb
mournfulness noun

Examples of mournful in a Sentence

she had such a mournful expression that someone teasingly asked if her dog had died the mournful survivors of the disaster were faced with the grim task of burying the dead

Recent Examples on the Web

The vocalist singing the mournful, gorgeous Portuguese music with perfect pitch is stunning in a black silk dress, her dark hair piled high on top of her head. Jill Gleeson, Good Housekeeping, "Menopause Doesn't Make Me Invisible," 5 Oct. 2018 Here and there Godard’s voice itself is heard, craggy as the branches of an ancient tree, making doomy, mournful pronouncements. Stephanie Zacharek, Time, "Cannes Review: Jean-Luc Godard's The Image Book Confounds and Dazzles," 14 May 2018 This though is the sad song with a sweet melody whose mournful tone feel likes a response to the terror attack that killed 22 at a Grande show in England last year. Dan Deluca,, "Drake, Ariana Grande, Cardi B and the other songs to create the best Summer music playlist," 5 July 2018 The mournful ballads of lost love, an upbeat tune to welcome the harvest, wandering mystical notes contemplating and celebrating God. Taylor Luck, The Christian Science Monitor, "In rediscovered reed flute, a soulful link to Jordanian identity," 13 July 2018 Music director Candida Caldicot does a terrific job accompanying the action — at turns mournful, dainty or racy — on a piano to the side of the stage. Demetrios Matheou, The Hollywood Reporter, "'The Lehman Trilogy': Theater Review," 13 July 2018 Rabee Zureikat, like many Jordanians, had long been enamored of the nay, whose soulful, ethereal sound is often used as an intro to classical Arabic orchestral music and mournful solos aired by Egyptian and Syrian TV. Taylor Luck, The Christian Science Monitor, "In rediscovered reed flute, a soulful link to Jordanian identity," 13 July 2018 Matthew McConaughey sees his role as a tragically misguided father in the drama White Boy Rick as a mournful country tune. Bryan Alexander, USA TODAY, "See Matthew McConaughey fail tragically as a dad in exclusive 'White Boy Rick' trailer," 4 June 2018 The work’s unknown sitter is thought to be descended from a family of barrel-makers, and his mournful, aged, dignified face both anticipates and rivals late Rembrandt. J.s. Marcus, WSJ, "A Modern Portraitist, Ahead of His Time," 6 July 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for mournful

Last Updated

13 Nov 2018

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The first known use of mournful was in the 15th century

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English Language Learners Definition of mournful

: full of sorrow : very sad


mourn·​ful | \ˈmȯrn-fəl \

Kids Definition of mournful

1 : full of sorrow or sadness a mournful face

2 : causing sorrow mournful news

Other Words from mournful

mournfully \ -​fə-​lē \ adverb spoke mournfully
mournfulness noun

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