keenly distressing to the feelings: poignant regret.
keen or strong in mental appeal: a subject of poignant interest.
affecting or moving the emotions: a poignant scene.
pungent to the smell: poignant cooking odors.
- poign·ant·ly, adverb
- un·poign·ant, adjective
- un·poign·ant·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use poignant in a sentence
Barnett’s painstaking attention to detail renders particularly poignant the irony of the impact that the oil trade has had on marine life.
This track helped me through lockdown as it is one of my all-time favorites and the song’s message is particularly poignant and relevant right now – stop discriminating against each other and help each other out.Pandemic playlists: Songs (and podcasts) that got us through coronavirus lockdown | Seb Joseph | July 26, 2021 | Digiday
Space, once a man’s place, is at last and forever changing—and Wally Funk is perhaps the most poignant face of that transformation.Wally Funk Is Going to Space Aboard Jeff Bezos's Rocket. Here's Why That Matters | Jeffrey Kluger | July 18, 2021 | Time
It works, and is so poignant and awkward that it’s no surprise that reviews often mentioned Lisa Kudrow’s The Comeback as a cringe-comedy reference point.The Best TV Shows of 2021 (So Far): From ‘Hacks’ to ‘WandaVision’ | Kevin Fallon | July 2, 2021 | The Daily Beast
You included a poignant anecdote about your son interrupting your reading on a rainy day.
It was poignant, and we so wanted to leave and be out there.Ava DuVernay on ‘Selma,’ the Racist Sony Emails, and Making Golden Globes History | Marlow Stern | December 15, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
All of which makes David Freeman's portrait of Hitchcock in his final days all the more poignant.Alfred Hitchcock’s Fade to Black: The Great Director’s Final Days | David Freeman | December 13, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
But Billy Childs absolutely delivers the goods in this poignant collection of Laura Nyro songs.
And as a writer and actor on The Mack, he made that film feel both more desperate and more poignant.How Richard Pryor Beat Bill Cosby and Transformed America | David Yaffe, Scott Saul | December 10, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
“Three is a Magic Number” becomes stunningly poignant to any couple that welcomes its first child.Schoolhouse Rock: A Trojan Horse of Knowledge and Power | Jason Lynch | September 6, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
In that poignant moment of self-revelation Tom's cumbersome machinery of intuition did not fail him.The Wave | Algernon Blackwood
The most poignant test, however, came when port was reached and the scented land-wind met his nostrils with the—Spring.The Wave | Algernon Blackwood
Octavie felt as if she had passed into a stage of existence which was like a dream, more poignant and real than life.The Awakening and Selected Short Stories | Kate Chopin
This immediate, poignant grief stung them bitterly and prevented for the moment any thought of what the future might hold.Those Dale Girls | Frank Weston Carruth
The edge of her wit had become poignant, her speech rendered logical and allusive.Mrs. Falchion, Complete | Gilbert Parker
British Dictionary definitions for poignant
sharply distressing or painful to the feelings
to the point; cutting or piercing: poignant wit
keen or pertinent in mental appeal: a poignant subject
pungent in smell
- poignancy or poignance, noun
- poignantly, adverb
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