Definition of pathetic
patheticalplay \pə-ˈthe-ti-kəl\ adjective
patheticallyplay \pə-ˈthe-ti-k(ə-)lē\ adverb
Examples of pathetic in a Sentence
The spectacle seen in the theater of the news presented the American President as a failed suppliant instead of a conquering hero—an ailing and pathetic figure dismissed with the smile of pity and the gift of some sweet candies shaped as miniature sculptures of the President's two dogs. —Lewis H. Lapham, Harper's, March 1992
They were brave, and bravely she served them a pathetic meal of nothing but limitless bowls of little potatoes boiled in their jackets … —M. F. K. Fisher, With Bold Knife and Fork, 1969
Her face looked pale and extinguished, as if dimmed by the rich red of her dress. She struck Archer, of a sudden, as a pathetic and even pitiful figure. —Edith Wharton, The Age of Innocence, 1920
The blind, old dog was a pathetic sight.
The team was pretty bad last year, but this year they're downright pathetic.
The story he told was a pathetic attempt to cover up a lie.
His car is a pathetic piece of junk.
Recent Examples of pathetic from the Web
Even the pathetic dwarf Mime (Peter Bronder) is credible.
God bless Christian and all white nationalists’ pathetic little souls.
Trout looked inhuman in 2017, but now his season will be marred by injury, one of the pathetic trappings of humanity.
To put it bluntly: these numbers are pretty pathetic.
One of my friends thought this was pretty pathetic.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pathetic'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Synonym Discussion of pathetic
PATHETIC Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of pathetic for English Language Learners
: causing feelings of sadness and sympathy
: very bad, poor, weak, etc.
PATHETIC Defined for Kids
Definition of pathetic for Students
: causing feelings of pity, tenderness, or sorrow “You talk about some pathetic, tortured-looking little faces.” — Christopher Paul Curtis, The Watsons
Seen and Heard
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