melancholic


melancholic
melancholic adj Melancholic, melancholy, atrabilious, hypochondriac are comparable when they mean gloomy or depressed, especially as a manifestation of one's temperament or state of health. Melancholic and melancholy are often used interchangeably without additional implications or suggestions
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the drawings Thurber has produced . . . calling into being an ineradicable population of fierce-looking women, furtive men, and gently melancholic dogs— Newsweek

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the Cape Colored, a gentle and melancholy people— N. Y. Times

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although each can be used discriminatingly to suggest the differences inherent in their related nouns (see melancholia and melancholy under SADNESS).
In such use melancholic describes a person who is afflicted with or inclined to melancholia
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those recurring moods of melancholic suspicion which had so tortured me . . . remained absent and she seemed on the road to recovery— Ellis

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Melancholy, on the other hand, describes a person, or the mood, disposition, acts, or utterances of a persoñ, who is excessively sad or detached in spirit and, usually, averse to what is cheerful or gay
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"They say you are a melancholy fellow." "I am so; I do love it better than laughing"— Shak.

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a changed smile flickered like sunlight over the melancholy countenance— Wylie

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there is no merriment . . . comparable to that of melancholy people escaping from the dark region in which it is their custom to keep themselves imprisoned— Hawthorne

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Atrabilious preserves the implication of an unhealthy physical condition more strongly than the preceding words; often in modern use it suggests the morose or choleric disposition of the dyspeptic or the predilection for gloom of those who have been subjected to severe strain
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neither were those plump rosy-gilled Englishmen that came hither, but a hard-faced, atrabilious, earnest- eyed race— J. R. Lowell

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that the American genius was foredoomed to fail was the atrabilious Ames's firm conviction— Brooks

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Hypochondriac comes close to atrabil-ious in its suggestion of constitutional gloominess but it implies also an unwholesome anxiety about one's state of health
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she was rather hypochondriac and was gloating over the tale of her symptoms— Edmund Wilson

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the culture just had gone hypochondriac, and all members of the society, whatever their congenital individual dispositions, had fear and pessimism pounded into them from childhood on— Kroeber

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Analogous words: *despondent, despairing, hopeless, forlorn, desperate: pessimistic, misanthropic, *cynical, misogynic

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

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  • Melancholic — Mel an*chol ic, a. [L. melancholicus, Gr. ?: cf. F. m[ e]lancholique.] Given to melancholy; depressed; melancholy; dejected; unhappy. [1913 Webster] Just as the melancholic eye Sees fleets and armies in the sky. Prior. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Melancholic — Mel an*chol ic, n. [Obs.] 1. One affected with a gloomy state of mind. J. Spenser. [1913 Webster] 2. A gloomy state of mind; melancholy. Clarendon. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • melancholic — index despondent, disconsolate, pessimistic Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • melancholic — англ. [мэленко/лик] melancholisch нем. [мэланхо/лиш] melancolico ит. [мэланко/лико] mélancolique фр. [мэланколи/к] меланхолический, грустный …   Словарь иностранных музыкальных терминов

  • melancholic — (adj.) late 14c., from MELANCHOLY (Cf. melancholy) + IC (Cf. ic), or else from L.L. melancholicus, from Gk. melankholikos choleric, from melankholia “sadness” (see MELANCHOLY (Cf. melancholy)). As a noun, from 1580s. Earlier adjective… …   Etymology dictionary

  • melancholic — [[t]me̱lənkɒ̱lɪk[/t]] melancholics ADJ GRADED If you describe someone or something as melancholic, you mean that they are very sad. [LITERARY] The night was as melancholic as his mood. ...his gentle, melancholic songs. N COUNT A melancholic is… …   English dictionary

  • melancholic — adjective Date: 14th century 1. of, relating to, or subject to melancholy ; depressed 2. of or relating to melancholia 3. tending to depress the spirits ; saddening • melancholic noun …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • melancholic — 1. Relating to or characteristic of melancholia. 2. Formerly, denoting a temperament characterized by irritability and a pessimistic outlook. 3. A person who is exhibiting melancholia. * * * mel·an·chol·ic .mel ən käl ik adj 1) of, relating to,… …   Medical dictionary

  • melancholic — adj. Melancholic is used with these nouns: ↑disposition …   Collocations dictionary

  • melancholic — adjective formal feeling or tending to be very sad, often because you are mentally ill: the cause of Emilia s melancholic condition …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English