Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Relating to or characteristic of dramatic tragedy or tragedies: tragic plays; the tragic hero.
  • adj. Writing or performing in tragedy: a tragic poet.
  • adj. Having the elements of tragedy; involving death, grief, or destruction: a tragic accident.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Causing great sadness or suffering.
  • adj. Relating to tragedy in a literary work.
  • adj. Involved in a tragedy.
  • n. A writer of tragedy.
  • n. A tragedy; a tragic drama.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of or pertaining to tragedy; of the nature or character of tragedy.
  • adj. Fatal to life; mournful; terrible; calamitous.
  • adj. Mournful; expressive of tragedy, the loss of life, or of sorrow.
  • n. A writer of tragedy.
  • n. A tragedy; a tragic drama.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Pertaining or relating to tragedy; of the nature of tragedy: as, a tragic poem; the tragic drama.
  • Characteristic of tragedy.
  • Connected with or characterized by great calamity, cruelty, or bloodshed; mournful; dreadful; heart-rending.
  • Expressive of tragedy, death, or sorrow.
  • n. A writer of tragedy; a tragedian.
  • n. A tragedy; a tragic, drama.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. very sad; especially involving grief or death or destruction
  • adj. of or relating to or characteristic of tragedy

Etymologies

Latin tragicus, from Greek tragikos, from tragos, goat.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Ancient Greek τραγικός (tragikos, "of or relating to tragedy"), from τράγος (tragos, "male goat"), a reference to the goat-satyrs of the theatrical plays of the Dorians. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • This organization epitomizes the term tragic-comedy for it ignores appalling human rights abuses in Sudan,

    American Thinker

  • One of his colleagues cautioned against overreacting to what he called a tragic and unusual accident.

    Lab Death Prompts Reviews

  • Contrary to the almost mechanistic, rationalist view of human nature underpinning the neo-liberal, free-market vision, Brooks notes Taleb's more pessimistic, more conservative view: He subscribes to what he calls the tragic vision of humankind, which 'believes in the existence of inherent limitations and flaws in the way we think and act and requires an acknowledgement of this fact as a basis for any individual and collective action.'

    Archive 2008-10-01

  • Senator Obama today said the death of 4,000 of our troops in Iraq represents what he called a tragic marker.

    CNN Transcript Mar 25, 2008

  • Mercury Energy says it regrets what it calls the tragic circumstances surrounding the death and will investigate further.

    CNN Transcript May 30, 2007

  • Israel apologized for what it calls tragic deaths.

    CNN Transcript Jul 25, 2006

  • The top U.S. diplomat for East Asia, Kurt Campbell, apologized Friday for what he called a "tragic and inexcusable rape that took place about a week ago."

    msnbc.com: Top msnbc.com headlines

  • Through their lawyers, the brothers expressed sorrow for what they called a tragic incident.

    Yahoo! News: Business - Opinion

  • Kohut used the term tragic man, in contrast to Freud’s guilty man, to express the idea that a self that is fragmented or depleted and that reflects unmirrored ambitions and is devoid of ideals is quite sad, and that this tragic state reflects the core problem of those with self disorders.

    Object Relations Theory and Self Psychology in Social Work Practice

  • He also asked the audience to pray for those lost in what he called a tragic accident.

    Gazette.com :

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.