[ sor-oh, sawr-oh ]
See synonyms for: sorrowsorrowingsorrower on

  1. distress caused by loss, affliction, disappointment, etc.; grief, sadness, or regret.

  2. a cause or occasion of grief or regret, as an affliction, a misfortune, or trouble: His first sorrow was the bank failure.

  1. the expression of grief, sadness, disappointment, or the like: muffled sorrow.

verb (used without object)
  1. to feel sorrow; grieve.

Origin of sorrow

First recorded before 900; (noun) Middle English; Old English sorg; cognate with German Sorge,Dutch zorg,Old Norse sorg,Gothic saurga; (verb) Middle English sorwen,Old English sorgian; cognate with Old High German sorgôn

synonym study For sorrow

1. Sorrow, distress, grief, misery, woe imply bitter suffering, especially as caused by loss or misfortune. Sorrow is the most general term. Grief is keen suffering, especially for a particular reason. Distress implies anxiety, anguish, or acute suffering caused by the pressure of trouble or adversity. Misery suggests such great and unremitting pain or wretchedness of body or mind as crushes the spirit. Woe is deep or inconsolable grief or misery.

Other words for sorrow

Other words from sorrow

  • sor·row·er, noun
  • sor·row·less, adjective
  • un·sor·row·ing, adjective

Words Nearby sorrow Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use sorrow in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for sorrow


/ (ˈsɒrəʊ) /

  1. the characteristic feeling of sadness, grief, or regret associated with loss, bereavement, sympathy for another's suffering, for an injury done, etc

  2. a particular cause or source of regret, grief, etc

  1. Also called: sorrowing the outward expression of grief or sadness

  1. (intr) to mourn or grieve

Origin of sorrow

Old English sorg; related to Old Norse sorg, Gothic saurga, Old High German sworga

Derived forms of sorrow

  • sorrower, noun
  • sorrowful, adjective
  • sorrowfully, adverb
  • sorrowfulness, noun

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

Other Idioms and Phrases with sorrow


see drown one's sorrows; more in sorrow than in anger.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.