or de·spond·ence

[dih-spon-duhn-see or dih-spon-duhns]


state of being despondent; depression of spirits from loss of courage or hope; dejection.

Origin of despondency

First recorded in 1645–55; despond + -ency
Related formspre·de·spond·en·cy, noun

Synonyms for despondency

Synonym study

See despair.

Antonyms for despondency Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for despondency

grief, gloom, sadness, despair, depression

Examples from the Web for despondency

Contemporary Examples of despondency

  • He sings angrily and directly to Anna about his feelings, his despondency, his pain—“Why do I have to pay attorney fees?!”

    The Daily Beast logo
    Kanye's Heartbreak


    December 2, 2008

Historical Examples of despondency

  • Lucretia's defeat in the Handicap had increased his despondency.


    W. A. Fraser

  • The Union army was still busy and he felt a few moments of despondency.

    The Rock of Chickamauga

    Joseph A. Altsheler

  • He thinks it is too late to change for any useful purpose, and he sinks into despondency.


    James Anthony Froude

  • There had been times in the last few days when he had suffered from despondency.

    Cleo The Magnificent

    Louis Zangwill

  • Maurice awoke to a sensation of despondency and physical discomfort.

    The Downfall

    Emile Zola

Word Origin and History for despondency

1650s; see despondence + -cy.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper