Trend Watch


After the Dallas Mavericks won the NBA championship ...


Lookups spiked on June 13, 2011.


Schadenfreude means "enjoyment obtained from the troubles of others."

The word was used by various commentators to describe the emotions some basketball fans experienced when the Miami Heat and their star LeBron James lost the NBA championship to the Dallas Mavericks.

James had left his hometown team, the Cleveland Cavaliers, not exactly in a modest fashion, to improve his chances of winning a championship. As New York magazine put it: "Last night's Mavericks win gave America one more night to revel in LeBron James schadenfreude."

It comes from the German words for "damage" and "joy."

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!