Definition of epigram in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈɛpɪɡram/


1A pithy saying or remark expressing an idea in a clever and amusing way: a Wildean epigram
More example sentences
  • So, after weeks of intense preparation, I have come up with several epigrams so devastatingly clever in their sarcasm that my adversaries will be forced to admit defeat and submit to my will immediately.
  • Many blogs feature in their heading a maxim, aphorism, saying, adage, axiom, saw, proverb, epigram or precept.
  • This was one of the reasons that people spent more time making up pithy aphorisms and witty epigrams.
quip, witticism, gem, play on words, jest, pun, sally, nice turn of phrase;
French bon mot, double entendre, jeu d'esprit
proverb, saying, maxim, adage, axiom, aphorism, saw, gnome, dictum, precept, epigraph, motto, catchphrase;
cliché, truism, commonplace;
words of wisdom, pearls of wisdom
informal (old) chestnut
rare apophthegm
1.1A short poem, especially a satirical one, with a witty or ingenious ending.
Example sentences
  • He was one of the most versatile of Roman poets, who wrote love poems, elegies, and satirical epigrams with equal success.
  • The papyrus bears 112 short poems called epigrams.
  • The Greek Anthology, a collection of erotic and witty epigrams compiled from classical to Byzantine times, pales beside it.



Pronunciation: /ɛpɪˈɡramətɪst/
Example sentences
  • ‘Painting is silent poetry,’ the Greek poet and epigrammatist Simonides wrote, ‘and poetry is painting that speaks.’
  • Compared to her, Whitman is an epigrammatist.
  • One grisly epigrammatist conceived an imaginary poem.


Pronunciation: /ɛpɪˈɡramətʌɪz/
(also epigrammatise) verb


Late Middle English: from French épigramme, or Latin epigramma, from Greek, from epi 'upon, in addition' + gramma (see -gram1).

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: epi|gram

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