from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A form of bitter misanthropy, a despair leading to hatred or contemptuous rejection of mankind, like Timon of Athens.
  • n. A bitter or cynical utterance or behavior, in the manner of Timon of Athens.


Timon +‎ -ism, from the 5th-century BC person Timon of Athens (as described by Plutarch, Lucian, Aristophanes), possibly by way of William Shakespeare's play Timon of Athens (c. 1607). Used in the Westminster Review (maybe after the earlier "Timonist") in a 1840 review. (Coining erroneously attributed to Herman Melville, who popularized it later in 1852.) (Wiktionary)


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