Definition of commiserate in English:



  • 1Express or feel sympathy or pity; sympathize.

    ‘she went over to commiserate with Rose on her unfortunate circumstances’
    • ‘She must certainly come to commiserate with the poor woman on having had such ill fortune for so long.’
    • ‘They congratulate you on the streets after a victory and commiserate with you, or ask you what happened when you lose.’
    • ‘After her novel was turned down by publishers and dropped by her agent, she created the site to commiserate with other aspiring authors.’
    • ‘The young ones don't complain, nor do they want us to commiserate with them.’
    • ‘I pitied the hapless patient and commiserated with the unhappy house officer, unsettled by the echoes of my own mistakes.’
    • ‘She knew of his death and was to commiserate with his family had she returned home on Sunday.’
    • ‘Her friends commiserated, of course, but could not comfort her.’
    • ‘We commiserate with fellow supporters when their heroes and their particular sporting interest goes down.’
    • ‘The operator on the end of the phone will speak flawless English, be chatty and polite and might even commiserate with you over the rotten weather where you live.’
    • ‘He was the ‘unhappiest man in the land ‘, a singer you didn't so much listen to as commiserate with.’
    • ‘She was to go up to the house when she came home to commiserate with them.’
    • ‘We commiserate with his wife and family, brothers, and sister Mary Kate, also with nephews and nieces, relatives and circle of friends who came to say goodbye.’
    • ‘We wish the committee well in future efforts to develop a Heritage Centre and commiserate with you on not receiving a grant from the Heritage Council on this.’
    • ‘So I called Chris - figured he could commiserate with me, since he got laid off from the same company about 6 months ago or so.’
    • ‘‘I commiserate with all the victims and those who lost their loved ones,’ she said during a radio broadcast.’
    • ‘People in that situation can commiserate with other parents about the difficulties, and then fall back on agreeing that ‘in the end it's all worthwhile’.’
    • ‘Following a breakup, a woman is likely to commiserate with her friends for a while and then get on with her life.’
    • ‘Cllr Dalton was congratulated by his fellow members on the council who were also quick to commiserate with Cllr Scully for the manner in which he lost out.’
    • ‘We will have 24 hours to think about the game, to have a few drinks and commiserate with each other, and then tomorrow we will get back to work.’
    • ‘I would also like to commiserate with the unsuccessful candidates.’
    offer sympathy to, be sympathetic to, express sympathy for, send condolences to, offer condolences to, condole with, sympathize with, empathize with, feel pity for, feel sorry for, feel for, be moved by, mourn for, sorrow for, grieve for
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    1. 1.1archaic with object Feel or express pity for (someone)
      ‘she did not exult in her rival's fall, but, on the contrary, commiserated her’
      • ‘If I stay out too late at the pub, I can always tell my future wife I was at your house commiserating you and your marital statue.’
      • ‘The familiar tomb-like aura still clung to the huge room, commiserating a time and era long-dead but glory unforgotten in the broken marble columns and towering, arched roof overhead.’
      • ‘Neighbours commiserated her descent and her miserable sentence, but she saw it otherwise.’
      • ‘Just as I had all the bar-room politicians agreeing wholeheartedly and commiserating me with a dram or two, a fellow angler appeared and, with great flourish, slapped four 10-pounders on the bar.’


Late 16th century: from Latin commiserat- ‘commiserated’, from the verb commiserari, from com- ‘with’ + miserari ‘to lament’ (from miser ‘wretched’).