- a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.
- Archaic. to compassionate.
Origin of compassion
SynonymsSee more synonyms for compassion on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for compassion
That kind of compassion might go a long way toward helping us begin to respond to a hurting world.
It is the kind of compassion espoused by every world religion and every revered religious leader.
I ask you now for your understanding and compassion: My father needs me at this most difficult time.An American Marine in Iran’s Prisons Goes on Hunger Strike
December 18, 2014
Third, Republicans should commit to compassion in action rather than compassion in appearance.How a GOP Senate Can Help the Poor
Veronique de Rugy
November 23, 2014
She credits Gandhi and Nelson Mandela for teaching her about compassion.How ‘Titanic ’Helped This Brave Young Woman Escape North Korea’s Totalitarian State
October 31, 2014
We shall reflect the compassion that is so much a part of your makeup.
Yet compassion is the work of a nation, not just a government.
Her mother was looking at her with a serene comprehension and compassion.Life and Death of Harriett Frean
She listened to him, silent, overcome with compassion, yet very happy withal.The Dream
All this time I was the envy of my acquaintance; but I was more deserving of their compassion.Tales And Novels, Volume 4 (of 10)
- a feeling of distress and pity for the suffering or misfortune of another, often including the desire to alleviate it
Word Origin and History for compassion
mid-14c., from Old French compassion "sympathy, pity" (12c.), from Late Latin compassionem (nominative compassio) "sympathy," noun of state from past participle stem of compati "to feel pity," from com- "together" (see com-) + pati "to suffer" (see passion).
Latin compassio is an ecclesiastical loan-translation of Greek sympatheia (see sympathy). An Old English loan-translation of compassion was efenðrowung.