Definition of lament in English:

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Pronunciation: /ləˈment/


1A passionate expression of grief or sorrow: his mother’s night-long laments for his father a song full of lament and sorrow
More example sentences
  • Dusty stood it on its head and made it a passionate lament of loneliness and love.
  • An assessment of great music should allow for a wider variety of moods and expressions - lament, meander, laughter, rage, gallows humor, resignation, and much more.
  • Cleopatra's response, though, suggests that she too intends suicide, and she confirms this in the passionate lament that follows his death.
wail, wailing, lamentation, moan, moaning, weeping, crying, sob, sobbing, keening;
1.1A song, piece of music, or poem expressing sorrow.
Example sentences
  • His music, comprising mostly songs, dance-tunes, laments, and some religious pieces, draws upon native tradition but was also influenced by European composers such as Vivaldi and Corelli.
  • Starting as a melancholic lament, the music slowly intruded into the action and eventually drowned out the longer speeches.
  • The show is packed full of stirring anthems, plaintive laments and unforgettable love songs sung by a first-class cast and backed by the Lyric Opera Orchestra.
dirge, requiem, elegy, threnody, monody;
1.2An expression of regret or disappointment; a complaint: there were constant laments about the conditions of employment
More example sentences
  • The same lament about constant meddling from politicians could be applied to education where since the eighties there has been reform followed by contradictory reform.
  • His constant lament was that the Tamil stage had not come of age.
  • Old-timers may find support for their constant laments that the game is steadily going downhill by citing the glittering example of 19th Century owner Chris Von der Ahe.


[with object]
1Mourn (a person’s loss or death): he was lamenting the death of his infant daughter
More example sentences
  • Therefore I seek your indulgence to allow me to lament my grief.
  • But our first duty as Christians is to mourn and lament such deaths, not to use violence in response to them.
  • The Minukku Vesham of the Brahmana, who laments the tragic deaths of his children before Arjuna, is one of the masterpiece roles of the sexagenarian actor.
mourn, grieve, sorrow, wail, weep, cry, sob, keen, beat one's breast
1.1 [no object] (lament for/over) Express one’s deep grief about.
Example sentences
  • Laurel almost felt sympathy for it - she knew it was odd to lament for a lightning rod, but the thing was so excruciatingly personified in its madness that it seemed coldhearted not to feel for it.
  • Many Republicans lament for the good-ole-days when voter disenfranchisement was straightforward.
  • Even Jesus suffered internally at different times in his life. He wept, for example, at the tomb of his dear friend Lazarus and lamented over the hardness of heart he saw in the people of Jerusalem.
1.2 [reporting verb] Express regret or disappointment over something considered unsatisfactory, unreasonable, or unfair: [with object]: she lamented the lack of shops in the town [with direct speech]: Thomas Jefferson later lamented, “Heaven remained silent.”
More example sentences
  • The writer of the 1868 report lamented, ‘I regret that so few find their way into the Bible class.’
  • ‘This was my seventh Challenge and I've come near each time, but never been a winner,’ a disappointed Smith lamented.
  • For years, dive operators and visitors to Phuket have lamented that the area lacked a decent sized wreck.
bemoan, bewail, complain about, deplore, rue;
protest against, object to, oppose, fulminate against, inveigh against, denounce



Example sentences
  • The Quivering presents three women in the roles of carer, siren and cultural lamenter - whatever that means!


Late Middle English (as a verb): from French lamenter or Latin lamentari, from lamenta (plural) 'weeping, wailing'.

Words that rhyme with lament

absent, accent, anent, ascent, assent, augment, bent, cement, cent, circumvent, consent, content, dent, event, extent, ferment, foment, forewent, forwent, frequent, gent, Ghent, Gwent, leant, lent, meant, misrepresent, misspent, outwent, pent, percent, pigment, rent, scent, segment, sent, spent, stent, Stoke-on-Trent, Tashkent, tent, torment, Trent, underspent, underwent, vent, went

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: la·ment

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