- sympathetic or kindly sorrow evoked by the suffering, distress, or misfortune of another, often leading one to give relief or aid or to show mercy: to feel pity for astarving child.
- a cause or reason for pity, sorrow, or regret: What a pity you could not go!
- Informal. motivated by a sense of pity or sympathy for others or for oneself: to have pity sex with a virgin; to go on a pity date with a loser.
- to feel pity or compassion for; be sorry for; commiserate with.
- to have compassion; feel pity.
- have/take pity, to show mercy or compassion.
Origin of pity
SynonymsSee more synonyms for pity on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for pities
Naturally she pities me for not having this wonderful experience, too.Why I Choose to Be Child-Free: Readers Share Their Stories
February 27, 2013
She won't say 'yes' then simply because she pities me or because she doesn't realize what it means.Shavings
Joseph C. Lincoln
It's just because our friend there sees it that she pities me.The Wings of the Dove, Volume 1 of 2
There's good stuff in the lad, and it would be a thousand pities it should be corrupted.One Of Them
Charles James Lever
Decoud thought that it was a thousand pities the wretch had not died of fright.Nostromo: A Tale of the Seaboard
It was a thousand pities he ever came here and discovered that clay.The Skin Game (Fourth Series Plays)
- sympathy or sorrow felt for the sufferings of another
- have pity on or take pity on to have sympathy or show mercy for
- something that causes regret or pity
- an unfortunate chancewhat a pity you can't come
- more's the pity it is highly regrettable (that)
- (tr) to feel pity for
Word Origin and History for pities
early 13c., from Old French pite, pitet "pity, mercy, compassion, care, tenderness; pitiful state, wretched condition" (11c., Modern French pitié), from Latin pietatem (nominative pietas) "piety, loyalty, duty" (see piety). Replaced Old English mildheortness, literally "mild-heartness," itself a loan-translation of Latin misericordia. English pity and piety were not fully distinguished until 17c. Transferred sense of "grounds or cause for pity" is from late 14c.
"to feel pity for," late 15c., from Old French pitier and from pity (n.). Related: Pitied; pitying.
Idioms and Phrases with pities
see for one's (pity's) sake; take pity on.