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

Annabelle Comes Home delves into Daniela’s grief and Judy’s lonely-teen melancholy, sorrowful subplots that never connect emotionally. Darren Franich,, "Annabelle Comes Home pushes the Conjuring universe toward absurdity: EW review," 24 June 2019 Kwok cracks open Sylvie’s heart, spilling its sorrowful contents for all the world to see. The Washington Post, The Mercury News, "Author mines familial loss and turns it into literary gold," 6 June 2019 The world has rightly united to fight the extremism that has made sorrowful brethren out of cities like New York, Paris, London, and Manchester and that has taken so many lives in Sri Lanka in recent days. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "Prince William Gave a Moving Speech at Christchurch's Al Noor Mosque. Here's the Full Transcript.," 26 Apr. 2019 The sorrowful words aren't the only allure of the single. Jennifer Aldrich, Country Living, "Dan + Shay Explain the Real Meaning Behind 'Tequila'," 3 Apr. 2019 The passing of Karl Lagerfeld at the start of Milan Fashion Week cast a sorrowful mood over the goings on, with many mourning the loss of one of the world’s most influential creators. Vogue, "Anna Wintour Shares Her Milan and Paris Fashion Week Highlights," 14 Mar. 2019 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

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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Statistics for sorrowful

Last Updated

5 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for sorrowful

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

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More Definitions for sorrowful



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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