pathos

[ pey-thos, -thohs, -thaws ]
/ ˈpeɪ θɒs, -θoʊs, -θɔs /

noun

the quality or power in an actual life experience or in literature, music, speech, or other forms of expression, of evoking a feeling of pity, or of sympathetic and kindly sorrow or compassion.
Obsolete. suffering.

Origin of pathos

1570–80; < Greek páthos suffering, sensation, akin to páschein to suffer
Can be confusedbathos pathos
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for pathos

British Dictionary definitions for pathos

pathos

/ (ˈpeɪθɒs) /

noun

the quality or power, esp in literature or speech, of arousing feelings of pity, sorrow, etc
a feeling of sympathy or pitya stab of pathos

Word Origin for pathos

C17: from Greek: suffering; related to penthos sorrow
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 pathos

pathos


n.

"quality that arouses pity or sorrow," 1660s, from Greek pathos "suffering, feeling, emotion, calamity," literally "what befalls one," related to paskhein "to suffer," and penthos "grief, sorrow;" from PIE root *kwent(h)- "to suffer, endure" (cf. Old Irish cessaim "I suffer," Lithuanian kenčiu "to suffer," pakanta "patience").

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper