pathos was our Word of the Day on 11/10/2017. Hear the podcast!
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Examples of pathos in a Sentence
- There is a pathos to the deflated certainties that left the Washington lawyer Leonard Garment weeping, inconsolable, outside the Senate chamber as the debate was ended. —Garry Wills, New York Times Book Review, 10 Sept. 1989
- Many schools at the end of the Depression were poor, but the threadbare nature of Christchurch was almost Dickensian in its pathos. —William Styron, This Quiet Dust and Other Writings, (1953) 1982
- The struggle back to solvency was arduous, and the stubborn determination and reserves of strength that it called forth from him in his mid-forties made him all at once a figure of considerable pathos and heroism in my eyes, a cross of a kind between Captain Ahab and Willy Loman. —Philip Roth, Reading Myself and Others, (1961) 1975
Our knowledge of his tragic end adds an element of pathos to the story of his early success.
Recent Examples of pathos from the Web
African-American Betts has shrewdly made the first Calling Card movie that bypasses black pathos but exploits a white-themed story.
The horror and pathos of George Whitmore thrilled us at first and finally left us numb.
Each comes from a comedy background and has birthed award-winning programs that not only are insanely hilarious but also offer a glimpse of a highbrow intelligence, surrealism and pathos not usually associated with contemporary black comedy.
Yet the movie doesn’t milk these beautifully played moments for excessive pathos.
Berry brought the blues into America’s high schools, and somehow did so without sacrificing any of the form’s lyricism, wit, and pathos, even while sometimes sacrificing specificity.
But surely neither the philistine fraud of the American C.P. nor the special pathos of fellow-traveling in the 1940’s is relevant here: North Vietnam, Spring, 1968.
Sydney may be plentiful in beautiful open spaces, but few have the charm and pathos that this oasis possesses.
Its plastic-gloved, assembly line trio may be mired in cringe-worthy circumstances ripe for pathos, but Wohl’s 2013 one-act is played largely for laughs.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pathos.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
pathos Entered English in the 1500s
The Greek word pathos means "suffering," "experience," or "emotion." It was borrowed into English in the 16th century, and for English speakers, the term usually refers to the emotions produced by tragedy or a depiction of tragedy. "Pathos" has quite a few kin in English. A "pathetic" sight moves us to pity. "Empathy" is the ability to feel the emotions of another. Though "pathology" is not literally "the study of suffering," it is "the study of diseases." You can probably guess at more relatives of "pathos." "Sympathy," "apathetic," "antipathy," "sociopath," and "psychopath" are a few.
Origin and Etymology of pathos
First Known Use: 1591See Words from the same year
PATHOS Defined for English Language Learners
Seen and Heard
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