- very unfortunate in condition or circumstances; miserable; pitiable.
- characterized by or attended with misery and sorrow.
- despicable, contemptible, or mean: a wretched miser.
- poor, sorry, or pitiful; worthless: a wretched job of sewing.
Origin of wretched
SynonymsSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
1. dejected, distressed, afflicted, woeful, woebegone, forlorn, unhappy. 2. Wretched, miserable, sorry refer to that which is unhappy, afflicted, or distressed. Wretched refers to a condition of extreme affliction or distress, especially as outwardly apparent: wretched hovels. Miserable refers more to the inward feeling of unhappiness or distress: a miserable life. Sorry applies to distressed, often poverty-stricken outward circumstances; but it has connotations of unworthiness, incongruousness, or the like, so that the beholder feels more contempt than pity: in a sorry plight. 3. base, vile.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Related Wordsdiscontent, pain, distress, agony, desolation, despondency, discomfort, grief, suffering, despair, torment, affliction, woe, anguish, sadness, depression, unhappiness, melancholia, abjection
Examples from the Web for wretchedness
Nine months on, could the desire to put an end to the wretchedness of war plot a path out of Syria's four-year conflict?Local Truces Are Syria’s Sad Little Pieces of Peace
November 18, 2014
The wretchedness of the life in Susiya, as in other Palestinians villages in the south Hebron Hills, is a human rights calamity.Susiya: A Human Rights Calamity
August 9, 2012
In the subsequent chapters the narrator is pulled, inexorably, to new depths of disillusionment and wretchedness.American Nightmare: Ralph Ellison’s ‘Invisible Man’ at 60
June 28, 2012
The working classes of Thatcherite Britain were in dire need of a spokesperson to celebrate their wretchedness.Dead Cool: Ian Dury
April 23, 2010
And then, amid his lore of wretchedness he hid his face and wept.The Christmas Banquet (From "Mosses From An Old Manse")
He was determined not to let the Street encroach on his wretchedness.K
Mary Roberts Rinehart
My estate that morning had been that of a king, of a god, in contrast to this present wretchedness.In the Valley
Who can speak of it if he has not known the wretchedness of others?The Three Cities Trilogy, Complete
Why seek for knowledge, which can prove only that our wretchedness is irremediable?Tales And Novels, Volume 8 (of 10)
- in poor or pitiful circumstances
- characterized by or causing misery
- despicable; base
- poor, inferior, or paltry
- (prenominal) (intensifier qualifying something undesirable)a wretched nuisance
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 wretchedness
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper