sor·​row·​ful | \ ˈsär-(ˌ)ō-fəl How to pronounce sorrowful (audio) , -ə-fəl, ˈsȯr-\

Definition of sorrowful

1 : full of or marked by sorrow a sorrowful goodbye
2 : expressive of or inducing sorrow sorrowful eyes

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Other Words from sorrowful

sorrowfully \ ˈsär-​(ˌ)ō-​f(ə-​)lē How to pronounce sorrowfully (audio) , -​ə-​f(ə-​)lē , ˈsȯr-​ \ adverb
sorrowfulness \ ˈsär-​(ˌ)ō-​fəl-​nəs How to pronounce sorrowfulness (audio) , -​ə-​fəl-​ , ˈsȯr-​ \ noun

Examples of sorrowful in a Sentence

adopted a sorrowful tone of voice to read the news story about the former governor's death the cult seemed to be a sorrowful assemblage of emotionally scarred people seeking love and redemption

Recent Examples on the Web

Goldin’s photographs are haunting — King possesses a soulful, fragile beauty; she’s rail thin, with deep sorrowful eyes. New York Times, "Nan Goldin Survived an Overdose to Fight the Opioid Epidemic," 11 June 2018 The sentence, including five years to be served concurrently for custodial interference, marks another chapter in a sorrowful family tale that began hours after the birth of Kamiyah Mobley on July 10, 1998, at a Jacksonville hospital. Ray Sanchez, CNN, "Woman sentenced to 18 years for kidnapping baby from hospital, raising her as her own," 8 June 2018 Fall 2008 was a sorrowful time; Reece’s father, who had embraced Susan as another daughter, died of melanoma just before Thanksgiving. Anndee Hochman,, "The Parent Trip: Susan and Reece Whitney of Wyndmoor," 3 Apr. 2018 Many hopeful young upstarts end up cast in the game's scrapheap, but none feel more sorrowful than Götze's decline., "From World Cup Hero to Squad Exclusion: The Sad Fall of Germany's Golden Boy Mario Götze," 15 May 2018 So What?,’’ and gives Schneider a sorrowful demeanor that is especially poignant when the landlady confronts the limits of her own courage. Don Aucoin,, "Doherty shines brightest in Moonbox’s compelling ‘Cabaret’," 17 Apr. 2018 For Abby, transitioning medically was accompanied by some sorrowful choices. Jane Mayer, The New Yorker, "The Story of a Trans Woman’s Face," 12 Mar. 2018 Abandonment, drug abuse, and betrayal all factor into this sorrowful equation, as Collin assuredly conveys the messy stew of passion, need, ego, loneliness, and fury that eventually begat such a calamity. Nick Schager, Esquire, "The Best Movies of 2017," 18 Dec. 2017 Deprived of her children full time, a good mother would feel sorrowful and bereft. Lara Bazelon, Slate Magazine, "Confessions of a Part-Time Mom," 13 June 2017

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

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First Known Use of sorrowful

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of sorrowful was before the 12th century

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English Language Learners Definition of sorrowful

formal + literary : feeling or showing sadness : full of sorrow


sor·​row·​ful | \ ˈsär-ō-fəl How to pronounce sorrowful (audio) , -ə-fəl\

Kids Definition of sorrowful

1 : full of or showing sadness a sorrowful face
2 : causing sadness a sorrowful tale

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