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[loo-goo-bree-uhs, -gyoo-]
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  1. mournful, dismal, or gloomy, especially in an affected, exaggerated, or unrelieved manner: lugubrious songs of lost love.
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Origin of lugubrious

1595–1605; < Latin lūgubri(s) mournful (akin to lūgēre to mourn) + -ous
Related formslu·gu·bri·ous·ly, adverblu·gu·bri·ous·ness, lu·gu·bri·os·i·ty [luh-goo-bree-os-i-tee, -gyoo-] /ləˌgu briˈɒs ɪ ti, -ˌgyu-/, nounnon·lu·gu·bri·ous, adjectivenon·lu·gu·bri·ous·ly, adverbnon·lu·gu·bri·ous·ness, nounun·lu·gu·bri·ous, adjectiveun·lu·gu·bri·ous·ly, adverbun·lu·gu·bri·ous·ness, noun


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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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Examples from the Web for lugubrious

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Miette, after a woman's fashion, was partial to lugubrious subjects.

  • But Aristide felt some doubts on the point; he had suspicions of some lugubrious farce.

  • He was too downcast even to sing one of his lugubrious hymns or to whistle.


    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • "It's darker in the grave," observed Captain Perez with lugubrious philosophy.

    Cap'n Eri

    Joseph Crosby Lincoln

  • Crane stared at the deceptive bag in the most lugubrious astonishment.

    The Young Miner

    Horatio Alger, Jr.

British Dictionary definitions for lugubrious


  1. excessively mournful; doleful
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Derived Formslugubriously, adverblugubriousness, noun

Word Origin

C17: from Latin lūgubris mournful, from lūgēre to grieve
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

Word Origin and History for lugubrious


c.1600, from Latin lugubris "mournful, pertaining to mourning," from lugere "to mourn," from PIE root *leug- "to break; to cause pain" (cf. Greek lygros "mournful, sad," Sanskrit rujati "breaks, torments," Lettish lauzit "to break the heart"). Related: Lugubriously; lugubriousness.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper