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[lam-uh n-tey-shuh n] /ˌlæm ənˈteɪ ʃən/
the act of lamenting or expressing grief.
a lament.
Lamentations, (used with a singular verb) a book of the Bible, traditionally ascribed to Jeremiah.
Abbreviation: Lam.
Origin of lamentation
1325-75; < Latin lāmentātiōn- (stem of lāmentātiō), equivalent to lāmentāt(us) (past participle of lāmentārī; see lament) + -iōn- -ion; replacing Middle English lamentacioun < Anglo-FrenchLatin, as above Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for lamentation
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Not pleasant, but painful is this doubt shooting through the soul, and keeping it in distress and often in lamentation.

    Homer's Odyssey Denton J. Snider
  • The torment was far too racking for such futile fashion of lamentation.

    Within the Law Marvin Dana
  • The news of his death filled all Achæa with lamentation and thirst for revenge.

  • There shall be a sound of lamentation; lo, then we shall rest.

  • What could she say to him when he should repeat to her, as he would be sure to do, his lamentation as to her future poverty?

    The Belton Estate Anthony Trollope
  • Her voice had dropped from anger to lamentation, and her tears again overflowed.

    The Greater Inclination Edith Wharton
  • Whereupon the woebegone Mrs. Fry lifted her head and her voice in lamentation.

    Anderson Crow, Detective George Barr McCutcheon
  • At length they heard a faint and melancholy sound, like someone in lamentation.

British Dictionary definitions for lamentation


a lament; expression of sorrow
the act of lamenting
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for lamentation

late 14c., from Old French lamentacion and directly from Latin lamentationem (nominative lamentatio) "wailing, moaning, weeping," noun of action from past participle stem of lamentari "to wail, moan, weep, lament," from lamentum "a wailing," from PIE root *la- "to shout, cry," probably ultimately imitative. Replaced Old English cwiþan.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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lamentation in the Bible

(Heb. qinah), an elegy or dirge. The first example of this form of poetry is the lament of David over Saul and Jonathan (2 Sam. 1:17-27). It was a frequent accompaniment of mourning (Amos 8:10). In 2 Sam. 3:33, 34 is recorded David's lament over Abner. Prophecy sometimes took the form of a lament when it predicted calamity (Ezek. 27:2, 32; 28:12; 32:2, 16).

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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