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[fi-lip-ik] /fɪˈlɪp ɪk/
any of the orations delivered by Demosthenes, the Athenian orator, in the 4th century b.c., against Philip, king of Macedon.
(lowercase) any speech or discourse of bitter denunciation.
Origin of Philippic
1585-95; < Latin Philippicus < Greek Philippikós. See Philip, -ic Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for Philippic
Historical Examples
  • If it is wanted for an invective, or Philippic, there it is!

  • And the third Philippic of Cicero: "We are born to honour and liberty; either let us keep them, or die with honour."

  • He has also been lecturing on temperance, and delivering a Philippic against Darwin.

  • Another line quoted in the 2nd Philippic is Cedant arma togae, concedat laurea laudi.

  • Such is the Philippic against Slavery by the first writer of the English language in our day, and one of the first in all times.

  • Thereupon the doctor launched forth in a Philippic against the school which supported him.

    Jack Alphonse Daudet
  • It was like a Philippic of Demosthenes; it was a Ciceronian oration against some Catiline, real or supposed.

    Senatorial Character C. A. Bartol
  • Burgoyne's hopes have not been high, as to any salutary result of his own Philippic while uttering it.

    Alas! Rhoda Broughton
  • On the second of September he delivered his first Philippic in the Senate.

  • There was a quiet smile around Father Letheby's mouth during this Philippic.

    My New Curate P.A. Sheehan
British Dictionary definitions for Philippic


a bitter or impassioned speech of denunciation; invective
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 Philippic



1590s, "bitter invective discourse," from Middle French philippique, from Latin (orationes) Philippicæ, translation of Greek Philippikoi (logoi), the speeches made in Athens by Demosthenes in 351-341 B.C.E. urging Greeks to unite and fight the rising power of Philip II of Macedon. The Latin phrase was used of the speeches made by Cicero against Marc Antony in 44 and 43 B.C.E.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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