sen·​ti·​men·​tal·​ism | \ ˌsen-tə-ˈmen-tə-ˌli-zəm How to pronounce sentimentalism (audio) \

Definition of sentimentalism

1 : the disposition to favor or indulge in sentimentality
2 : an excessively sentimental conception or statement

Other Words from sentimentalism

sentimentalist \ ˌsen-​tə-​ˈmen-​tə-​list How to pronounce sentimentalism (audio) \ noun

Examples of sentimentalism in a Sentence

the sentimentalism of 19th-century art the novel's sentimentalism bored me
Recent Examples on the Web The whole effectively functions as a scrapbook, but without the nostalgia or sentimentalism. Lovia Gyarkye, The Hollywood Reporter, 24 Feb. 2022 This is no sentimentalism: Americans have long defined themselves as a family. Maurizio Valsania, The Conversation, 3 Dec. 2021 Now, the difficulty is compassion can often lead a biographer or a historian into a sloppy sentimentalism, sometimes even into maybe what is worse, and that is a kind of guilty empathy and sympathy with your subject. Isaac Chotiner, The New Yorker, 24 Nov. 2021 Much sentimentalism has attached itself to Ashley’s sack and the poetry of Ruth’s embroidered inscription, but the sack was originally an emergency kit, born out of despairing necessity. New York Times, 9 June 2021 Nixon critics tend to associate his name not just with lying and abuse of power, but also with maudlin sentimentalism and elaborate excuse-making. Sebastian Smee, Washington Post, 4 Sep. 2020 The trouble is that, mixed up in all this, there is a heartfelt sentimentalism (understandable, given the circumstances) and political opportunism. Madeleine Kearns, National Review, 14 Apr. 2020 With the rise of the middle class in the 17th and 18th centuries, sentimentalism became a movement that emphasized compassion as a desirable character trait, causing an increase in the expressions of sentiment. cleveland, 10 Feb. 2020 The sentimentalism was mitigated by regular doses of bawdy humor, the targets of which were no doubt the envy of quite a number of spectators of both sexes. Los Angeles Times, 21 July 2019 See More

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

First Known Use of sentimentalism

1817, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of sentimentalism was in 1817

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Cite this Entry

“Sentimentalism.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Jun. 2022.

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