Pathetic Pa*thet"ic, a. [L. patheticus, Gr. ?, fr. ?, ?, to suffer: cf. F. path['e]tique. See {Pathos}.] 1. Expressing or showing anger; passionate. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]

2. Affecting or moving the tender emotions, esp. pity or grief; full of pathos; as, a pathetic song or story. ``Pathetic action.'' --Macaulay. [1913 Webster]

No theory of the passions can teach a man to be pathetic. --E. Porter. [1913 Webster]

{Pathetic muscle} (Anat.), the superior oblique muscle of the eye.

{Pathetic nerve} (Anat.), the fourth cranial, or trochlear, nerve, which supplies the superior oblique, or pathetic, muscle of the eye.

{The pathetic}, a style or manner adapted to arouse the tender emotions. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • pathetic — [pə thet′ik] adj. [LL patheticus < Gr pathētikos, akin to pathos, suffering, PATHOS] 1. expressing, arousing, or intended to arouse pity, sorrow, sympathy, or compassion; pitiful 2. pitifully unsuccessful, ineffective, etc. [a pathetic… …   English World dictionary

  • pathetic — (adj.) 1590s, affecting the emotions, exciting the passions, from M.Fr. pathétique moving, stirring, affecting (16c.), from L.L. patheticus, from Gk. pathetikos sensitive, capable of emotion, from pathetos liable to suffer, verbal adj. of pathein …   Etymology dictionary

  • pathetic — in its modern informal meaning ‘inadequate, feeble’, has compromised the primary (and by no means derogatory) meaning ‘arousing pity or sadness’ to the extent that a statement such as The play opens with a pathetic speech is likely to be… …   Modern English usage

  • pathetic — index deplorable, disconsolate, lamentable, paltry Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • pathetic — poignant, affecting, *moving, touching, impressive Analogous words: *pitiful, piteous, pitiable: plaintive, *melancholy, doleful Antonyms: comical …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • pathetic — [adj] sad, affecting commiserable, deplorable, distressing, feeble, heartbreaking, heartrending*, inadequate, lamentable, meager, melting, miserable, moving, paltry, petty, piteous, pitiable, pitiful, plaintive, poignant, poor, puny, rueful,… …   New thesaurus

  • pathetic — ► ADJECTIVE 1) arousing pity. 2) informal miserably inadequate. 3) archaic relating to the emotions. DERIVATIVES pathetically adverb. ORIGIN Greek path tikos sensitive , from pathos suffering …   English terms dictionary

  • -pathetic — or pathic adj combining form • • • Main Entry: ↑ path …   Useful english dictionary

  • pathetic — 01. My tennis serve is [pathetic]; I really have to work on it. 02. The baby was sick for the first few days after it was born, and was [pathetically] small and weak. 03. The little dog looked [pathetic] waiting outside in the pouring rain. 04.… …   Grammatical examples in English

  • pathetic — [[t]pəθe̱tɪk[/t]] 1) ADJ GRADED If you describe a person or animal as pathetic, you mean that they are sad and weak or helpless, and they make you feel very sorry for them. ...a pathetic little dog with a curly tail... The small group of… …   English dictionary

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