- full of or expressing pity: a pitying look.
Origin of pitying
- sympathetic or kindly sorrow evoked by the suffering, distress, or misfortune of another, often leading one to give relief or aid or to show mercy: to feel pity for astarving child.
- a cause or reason for pity, sorrow, or regret: What a pity you could not go!
- Informal. motivated by a sense of pity or sympathy for others or for oneself: to have pity sex with a virgin; to go on a pity date with a loser.
- to feel pity or compassion for; be sorry for; commiserate with.
- to have compassion; feel pity.
- have/take pity, to show mercy or compassion.
Origin of pity
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for pitying
What should have been a moment of reckoning for a selfish, serial liar instead ended with us pitying him.The Walking Dead’s ‘Self Help’: A Grim Show Displays Its Comedy Streak, and A Major Reveal
November 10, 2014
Galina slipped in for a moment and with a pitying look gave me a blanket.Inside Gaddafi’s Harem: The Story of a Girl’s Abduction
August 29, 2013
“Oh, thank God,” I said, pitying them but comforted to hear a valid excuse.My Disney Cruise from Hell
April 9, 2010
I received in reply a shake of the head and a pitying smile.A Woman Tenderfoot
Grace Gallatin Seton-Thompson
The tradesmen with whom she had to deal came slowly to have a pitying respect for her.Hetty's Strange History
His pitying eyes searched the lineaments of the poor wretch.Slaves of Mercury
Let me believe that I may hold you to your noble, pitying words.The First Violin
All the same; just now you were pitying your folk at home, and prisoners and that.Hall-Marked and Others (From Six Short Plays)
- sympathy or sorrow felt for the sufferings of another
- have pity on or take pity on to have sympathy or show mercy for
- something that causes regret or pity
- an unfortunate chancewhat a pity you can't come
- more's the pity it is highly regrettable (that)
- (tr) to feel pity for
Word Origin and History for pitying
early 13c., from Old French pite, pitet "pity, mercy, compassion, care, tenderness; pitiful state, wretched condition" (11c., Modern French pitié), from Latin pietatem (nominative pietas) "piety, loyalty, duty" (see piety). Replaced Old English mildheortness, literally "mild-heartness," itself a loan-translation of Latin misericordia. English pity and piety were not fully distinguished until 17c. Transferred sense of "grounds or cause for pity" is from late 14c.
"to feel pity for," late 15c., from Old French pitier and from pity (n.). Related: Pitied; pitying.