[ kuh-miz-uh-reyt ]
/ kəˈmɪz əˌreɪt /

verb (used with object), com·mis·er·at·ed, com·mis·er·at·ing.

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.

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 forms

Can be confused

commensurate commiserate Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for commiserative

  • 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!"

  • 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

British Dictionary definitions for commiserative


/ (kəˈmɪzəˌreɪt) /


(when intr, usually foll by with) to feel or express sympathy or compassion (for)

Derived Forms

Word Origin for commiserate

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