One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1‘a narrow-minded, joyless man’
gloomy, melancholy, morose, lugubrious, glum, sombre, saturnine, sullen, dour, mirthless, humourless
unhappy, sad, miserable, depressed, despondent, sunk in gloom, heavy-hearted, doleful, downcast, dejected, dispirited
2‘a joyless room filled with yellowing oil paintings’
depressing, cheerless, gloomy, dreary, bleak, dispiriting, drab, dismal, desolate, wretched, comfortless, austere, stark, sombre, grim
unwelcoming, uninviting, inhospitable
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