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commiserate

[kuh-miz-uh-reyt]
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verb (used with object), com·mis·er·at·ed, com·mis·er·at·ing.
  1. to feel or express sorrow or sympathy for; empathize with; pity.
verb (used without object), com·mis·er·at·ed, com·mis·er·at·ing.
  1. to sympathize (usually followed by with): They commiserated with him over the loss of his job.

Origin of commiserate

1585–95; < Latin commiserātus (past participle of commiserārī), equivalent to com- com- + miser pitiable (see misery) + -ātus -ate1
Related formscom·mis·er·a·ble, adjectivecom·mis·er·a·tion, nouncom·mis·er·a·tive, adjectivecom·mis·er·a·tive·ly, adverbcom·mis·er·a·tor, nounnon·com·mis·er·a·tion, nounnon·com·mis·er·a·tive, adjectivenon·com·mis·er·a·tive·ly, adverbun·com·mis·er·at·ed, adjectiveun·com·mis·er·at·ing, adjectiveun·com·mis·er·a·tive, adjectiveun·com·mis·er·a·tive·ly, adverb
Can be confusedcommensurate commiserate
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for commiserative

Historical Examples

  • The clearest listener he could find, and the least commiserative, happily.

    Adventures in the Arts

    Marsden Hartley

  • Mr. Henry Slater received Cordelia with a smile that was both conciliating and commiserative.

    The Silver Poppy

    Arthur Stringer

  • Eugene Bantry, flying expertly by with Mamie, was bestowing upon Mr. Flitcroft a commiserative wink.

  • That was why I murmured in a commiserative tone, "Luther's niece—poor girl!"


British Dictionary definitions for commiserative

commiserate

verb
  1. (when intr, usually foll by with) to feel or express sympathy or compassion (for)
Derived Formscommiserable, adjectivecommiseration, nouncommiserative, adjectivecommiseratively, adverbcommiserator, noun

Word Origin

C17: from Latin commiserārī, from com- together + miserārī to bewail, pity, from miser wretched
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 commiserative

commiserate

v.

c.1600, from Latin commiseratus, past participle of commiserari "to pity, bewail" (see commiseration). Related: Commiserated; commiserating. An Old English loan-translation of commiserate was efensargian.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper