pyrrhic

noun
pyr·​rhic | \ ˈpir-ik How to pronounce pyrrhic (audio) \

Definition of pyrrhic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a metrical foot consisting of two short or unaccented syllables

Pyrrhic

adjective
Pyr·​rhic | \ ˈpir-ik How to pronounce Pyrrhic (audio) \

Definition of Pyrrhic (Entry 2 of 2)

: achieved at excessive cost a Pyrrhic victory also : costly to the point of negating or outweighing expected benefits a great but Pyrrhic act of ingenuity

Examples of pyrrhic in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun These are principles that must apply around the world, for basic fairness and because solving the climate crisis in just the U.S. would be the most pyrrhic of victories. The New Yorker, 18 Mar. 2022

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

First Known Use of pyrrhic

Noun

1610, in the meaning defined above

Adjective

1675, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for pyrrhic

Noun

Latin pyrrhichius, from Greek (pous) pyrrhichios, from pyrrhichē, a kind of dance

Adjective

Pyrrhus, king of Epirus who sustained heavy losses in defeating the Romans

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Time Traveler for pyrrhic

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The first known use of pyrrhic was in 1610

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Dictionary Entries Near pyrrhic

Pyrrha

pyrrhic

Pyrrhic

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Cite this Entry

“Pyrrhic.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pyrrhic. Accessed 28 May. 2022.

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