Job's comforter

[ johbz ]
/ dʒoʊbz /

noun

a person who unwittingly or maliciously depresses or discourages someone while attempting to be consoling.

Origin of Job's comforter

First recorded in 1730–40
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for job's comforters

Job's comforter


noun

a person who, while purporting to give sympathy, succeeds only in adding to distress
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

Culture definitions for job's comforters

Job's comforters


Three friends of Job who visited him in his affliction and offered him a way of making sense of his troubles: namely, that he was getting what he deserved. Job's friends maintained that misfortunes were sent by God as punishments for sin, and thus despite Job's apparent goodness, he must really be a terrible sinner. Job persistently disputed them, saying that God is supreme and mysterious — that God can send misfortunes to both good and wicked people and may not be second-guessed.

Note

A “Job's comforter” is someone who apparently offers consolation to another person but actually makes the other person feel worse.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.