Definition of tragic in English:


Syllabification: trag·ic
Pronunciation: /ˈtrajik


1Causing or characterized by extreme distress or sorrow: the shooting was a tragic accident
More example sentences
  • Everyone at the school is extremely shaken and saddened by the tragic accident.
  • It was a tragic accident, but accidents happen in demolition all the time.
  • Three more people died on local roads in the past week in two tragic accidents
disastrous, calamitous, catastrophic, cataclysmic, devastating, terrible, dreadful, awful, appalling, dismal, horrendous;
fatal, deadly, mortal, lethal
regrettable, shameful, terrible, horrible, awful, deplorable, lamentable, piteous, dreadful, grievous
1.1Suffering extreme distress or sorrow: the tragic parents reached the end of their tether
More example sentences
  • The agony goes on for the parents of the tragic four-year-old as doctors remain baffled as to how he died.
  • The tragic lives of parents are never a reason to repeat the tragedy upon their children.
  • The parents of tragic Robbie are celebrating the birth of a baby daughter.
1.2 informal Very bad or inadeqate: on the other hand, I like degenerate, tragic food she wears tragic cardigans, usually done up the wrong way
More example sentences
  • The Bradys sport the same tragic early-seventies quiffs, boast wardrobes packed with polyester flares, and talk in absurd sitcom gagspeak.
  • That reminds me. I'm going out to dinner at Isabella's tomorrow night. See? I'm not so tragic after all.
  • Miss Wilson can't even control her tragic 70s hairdo let alone a class.
2Of or relating to tragedy in a literary work.
More example sentences
  • The Play of King Lear is a great tragic play that many tragedies try to compare to.
  • Then again, it's a theme of war films to make tragedies all the more tragic, isn't it?
  • He was the icon in an era of icons, but like Shakespeare's tragic heroes his fatal flaws cut short a certain glittering career.


mid 16th century: from French tragique, via Latin from Greek tragikos, from tragos 'goat', but associated with tragōidia (see tragedy).



More example sentences
  • In Chapter Six, Johnny meets Belladonna and loses her again, in tragical circumstances.
  • One of the things which I've learned from it all, from this - it's amazing how some - such a tragical experience can bring so much love and so much - can teach you so much.
  • In this sense, Shylock is a tragical figure instead of a comical one, because he has to make a difficult decision, either result of which will hurt himself.


Pronunciation: /-ik(ə)lē/
More example sentences
  • The truth of his statement was tragically demonstrated during the 1998 race.
  • As was tragically the case with one young boy recently who ate peanut butter, allergies can be fatal.
  • This Hampshire home will sparkle more than ever this year in honour of a woman whose life was cut tragically short.

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