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interjection Archaic.
  1. (used as an exclamation of sorrow, regret, or dismay.)
Also a·lack·a·day [uh-lak-uh-dey] /əˈlæk əˌdeɪ/.

Origin of alack

presumably ah + lack. Cf. aha, ahem, alas
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for alackaday

Historical Examples

  • But alas and alackaday for the instability of youthful affection!

    The Holy Cross and Other Tales

    Eugene Field

  • For Quintus Q.—alas and alackaday—was the last of his glorious line.

    Old Judge Priest

    Irvin S. Cobb

British Dictionary definitions for alackaday


alackaday (əˈlækəˌdeɪ)

  1. an archaic or poetic word for alas

Word Origin

C15: from a ah! + lack loss, lack
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for alackaday


late 15c., from ah, lack, from lack in Middle English sense of "loss, failure, reproach, shame." Originally an expression of dissatisfaction, later of regret or unpleasant surprise.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper