Definition of histrionic in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌhɪstrɪˈɒnɪk/


1Excessively theatrical or dramatic in character or style: a histrionic outburst
More example sentences
  • Buddy Guy's version of ‘Money’ is a great example of the extended guitar solo rock style - wonderfully histrionic.
  • Thank God, it's also not ‘entertaining’ in the histrionic style of films such as Girl, Interrupted and A Beautiful Mind.
  • Clarissa's quiet apotheosis is offered as an alternative to histrionic theatrics.
1.1 formal Of or concerning actors or acting: histrionic talents
More example sentences
  • Spellbound inmates have been cheering every dialogue and applauding the histrionic skills of actors.
  • A little natural histrionic talent and lots of luck are what you require to make it big on the silver screen.
  • If political parties want to use their histrionic talents, why not?
1.2 Psychiatry Denoting a personality disorder marked by shallow volatile emotions and attention-seeking behaviour.
Example sentences
  • And you risk being labeled as having a narcissistic or histrionic personality disorder.
  • However, conduct problems at study entry did not significantly affect the risk for major depression or histrionic personality disorders in adulthood.
  • The survey found no gender differences in the prevalence of obsessive-compulsive, schizoid, or histrionic personality disorders.


1 (histrionics) Melodramatic behaviour designed to attract attention: by now, Anna was accustomed to her mother’s histrionics
More example sentences
  • The average, mainstream American feature deals with grief by employing a mixture of histrionics and melodramatic manipulation.
  • But his dominance, like Smiley's, arises from a quiet natural authority that disdains the tasteless excesses of ostentation and histrionics.
  • And now that she apparently doesn't face the death penalty in Bali either, my sympathy for her histrionics is in fairly short supply.
dramatics, drama, theatrics, theatricality, tantrums;
affectation, staginess, artificiality, unnaturalness
1.1 archaic Dramatic performances; the theatre: he loved the theatre and everything which savoured of histrionics
More example sentences
  • This form of art provides ample scope for the actor to excel in histrionics.
2 archaic An actor.



Pronunciation: /ˌhɪstrɪˈɒnɪkli/
Example sentences
  • There wasn't much to do histrionically in that film.
  • ‘It's an old, rooted habit,’ said Bonetti of his man's tendency to flop histrionically.
  • Still, if I'm going to be disordered, even temporarily, it may as well be histrionically.


Mid 17th century (in the sense 'dramatically exaggerated, hypocritical'): from late Latin histrionicus, from Latin histrio(n-) 'actor'.

Words that rhyme with histrionic

anachronic, animatronic, bionic, Brythonic, bubonic, Byronic, canonic, carbonic, catatonic, chalcedonic, chronic, colonic, conic, cyclonic, daemonic, demonic, diatonic, draconic, electronic, embryonic, euphonic, harmonic, hegemonic, homophonic, hypersonic, iconic, ionic, ironic, isotonic, laconic, macaronic, Masonic, Miltonic, mnemonic, monotonic, moronic, Napoleonic, philharmonic, phonic, Platonic, Plutonic, polyphonic, quadraphonic, sardonic, saxophonic, siphonic, Slavonic, sonic, stereophonic, subsonic, subtonic, symphonic, tectonic, Teutonic, thermionic, tonic, transonic, ultrasonic

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: his¦tri|on¦ic

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