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[dih-spon-duh nt] /dɪˈspɒn dənt/
feeling or showing profound hopelessness, dejection, discouragement, or gloom:
despondent about failing health.
Origin of despondent
1690-1700; < Latin dēspondent- (stem of dēspondēns), present participle of dēspondēre. See despond, -ent
Related forms
despondently, adverb
predespondent, adjective
quasi-despondent, adjective
quasi-despondently, adverb
undespondent, adjective
undespondently, adverb
disheartened, downhearted, melancholy, blue.
happy, hopeful.
Synonym Study
See hopeless. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for despondently
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • "My son," said Melinda despondently, and went into the nursery.

    Teething Ring James Causey
  • "Yes," she answered, despondently, looking up at me with tear-stained eyes.

    In Direst Peril David Christie Murray
  • "I'm havin' a time iv it with Terence," said Mr. Hennessy, despondently.

    Mr. Dooley in Peace and in War

    Finley Peter Dunne
  • "It seems hopeless to try to find out who it is," Philip said despondently.

  • "I suppose it is, Bullen," Hallett said despondently, as he stretched himself.

  • Peter shook his head, not despondently so much as in dismay.

    Linda Tressel

    Anthony Trollope
  • "I'm sure I don't know, either," added Dorothy, despondently.

    The Road to Oz L. Frank Baum
  • "There's Parker's name on the label," agreed Gwen despondently.

  • The divine and the professor stood and gazed at him despondently.

    'That Very Mab' May Kendall and Andrew Lang
British Dictionary definitions for despondently


downcast or disheartened; lacking hope or courage; dejected
Derived Forms
despondence, noun
despondency, noun
despondently, adverb
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
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Word Origin and History for despondently



1690s, from Latin despondentem (nominative despondens), present participle of despondere (see despondence). Related: Despondently (1670s).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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