pes·​si·​mis·​tic | \ ˌpe-sə-ˈmi-stik How to pronounce pessimistic (audio) also ˌpe-zə- \

Definition of pessimistic

: of, relating to, or characterized by pessimism : gloomy

Other Words from pessimistic

pessimistically \ ˌpe-​sə-​ˈmi-​sti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce pessimistic (audio) also  ˌpe-​zə-​ \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for pessimistic

cynical, misanthropic, pessimistic mean deeply distrustful. cynical implies having a sneering disbelief in sincerity or integrity. cynical about politicians' motives misanthropic suggests a rooted distrust and dislike of human beings and their society. a solitary and misanthropic artist pessimistic implies having a gloomy, distrustful view of life. pessimistic about the future

Examples of pessimistic in a Sentence

Most doctors were pessimistic that a cure could be found. The film gives a very pessimistic view of human nature. He has an extremely negative and pessimistic attitude.
Recent Examples on the Web Within recent weeks, many investors and analysts have become increasingly pessimistic that the Fed will be able to pull that off. Akane Otani, WSJ, 20 June 2022 The question arises, why are US investors so pessimistic? Brendan Ahern, Forbes, 10 June 2022 Americans have become pessimistic about the economy and their own financial prospects as their paychecks have failed to keep up with inflation. Jim Tankersley,, 31 May 2022 While background check bills like H.R. 8 have passed in the House, Senate Democrats and experts are pessimistic that a deal could be done to pass it into law. Timothy Bella, Washington Post, 26 May 2022 And while most people continue to disapprove of the president's handling of inflation and the economy, those ratings have not moved much, for better or worse, perhaps because people remain pessimistic about those issues. Anthony Salvanto, CBS News, 22 May 2022 The Communist Party meeting comes as strict Covid restrictions in China have battered its stock markets and currency, and investors are growing increasingly pessimistic about the impact of lockdowns on the world’s second biggest economy. Diksha Madhok, CNN, 29 Apr. 2022 Democratic insiders are feeling increasingly pessimistic about their party's chances of avoiding disaster in the November midterm elections, according to a report published Saturday. Grayson Quay, The Week, 24 Apr. 2022 For example, despite polls showing that the American public is worried about inflation and deeply pessimistic about the country’s direction, abundant data indicates that the U.S. economy is booming. Mark Copelovitch, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 10 Mar. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pessimistic.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of pessimistic

1865, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for pessimistic

pessimist + -ic entry 1

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Time Traveler for pessimistic

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The first known use of pessimistic was in 1865

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Last Updated

2 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Pessimistic.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Jul. 2022.

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More Definitions for pessimistic


pes·​si·​mis·​tic | \ ˌpe-sə-ˈmi-stik How to pronounce pessimistic (audio) \

Kids Definition of pessimistic

1 : tending to think that bad things will happen
2 : having the belief that evil is more common than good

More from Merriam-Webster on pessimistic

Nglish: Translation of pessimistic for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pessimistic for Arabic Speakers


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