Definition of nostalgia in English:

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Pronunciation: /näˈstaljə/
Pronunciation: /nəˈstaljə/


1A sentimental longing or wistful affection for the past, typically for a period or place with happy personal associations: I was overcome with acute nostalgia for my days in college
More example sentences
  • The days of the Empire were by then long gone, but not so the English romance with faraway places or its nostalgia for the past.
  • Along with the concept, there was this nagging feeling of nostalgia for the past.
  • There is no nostalgia with regard to past connections with the states from the Warsaw Pact.
1.1Something done or presented in order to evoke feelings of nostalgia: an evening of TV nostalgia
More example sentences
  • Every family of the street had a member present and nostalgia was the theme.
  • Showband nostalgia was much to the fore at Club 3 in Roscommon last Friday night week.



Pronunciation: /-jist/
Example sentences
  • While nostalgists browse through the museum's remarkable collection of cricketing memorabilia, kids can play interactive cricket on computer screens in a children's room.
  • Standing shoulder-to-shoulder with the snobs at the barricades are the nostalgists for Old New York.
  • They are not anti-imperialists so much as nostalgists for imperialism.


Late 18th century (in the sense 'acute homesickness'): modern Latin (translating German Heimweh 'homesickness'), from Greek nostos 'return home' + algos 'pain'.

  • As the saying goes, ‘Nostalgia isn't what it used to be’. In English nostalgia first meant ‘acute homesickness’, coined in the 18th century from the Greek words nostos, ‘return home’, and algos, ‘pain’, as a translation of the German word Heimweh or ‘homesickness’. The familiar modern meaning, ‘longing for the past’, had become established by the early 20th century. There are a number of medical terms also derived from algos, all relating to physical pain, such as neuralgia (early 19th century) ‘pain in a nerve’, and analgesia (early 18th century) ‘relief of pain’.

Words that rhyme with nostalgia


For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: nos·tal·gia

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