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[luh-ment] /ləˈmɛnt/
verb (used with object)
to feel or express sorrow or regret for:
to lament his absence.
to mourn for or over.
verb (used without object)
to feel, show, or express grief, sorrow, or regret.
to mourn deeply.
an expression of grief or sorrow.
a formal expression of sorrow or mourning, especially in verse or song; an elegy or dirge.
1520-30; (noun) < Latin lāmentum plaint; (v.) < Latin lāmentārī, derivative of lāmentum
Related forms
lamenter, noun
lamentingly, adverb
1, 2. bewail, bemoan, deplore. 3, 4. grieve, weep. 5. lamentation, moan. 6. monody, threnody. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for lamenting
  • And dozens of reports arrived lamenting the state of affairs and outlining the path forward.
  • Instead of lamenting that kids prefer these foods, come up with healthy foods that taste better.
  • Well, after lamenting the slow volcano news, things are beginning to pick up again.
  • Far from lamenting last week's highly publicized test failure, advocates of a defense against ballistic missiles should rejoice.
  • She ends her article by lamenting the good old days, essentially.
  • It's time for solutions, time to stop wringing our hands and lamenting our dilemma.
  • Many of us justify by lamenting that they are only children, that nothing they do now will be judged in the future.
  • Curious, and a bit alarming, the number of comments lamenting the length of this article.
  • Highly ironic that the article lamenting disinformation was, itself, one long piece of disinformation.
  • To do so while simultaneously lamenting the strength of the euro is bizarre.
British Dictionary definitions for lamenting


to feel or express sorrow, remorse, or regret (for or over)
an expression of sorrow
a poem or song in which a death is lamented
Derived Forms
lamenter, noun
lamentingly, adverb
Word Origin
C16: from Latin lāmentum
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 lamenting



mid-15c., back-formation from lamentation or else from Middle French lamenter "to moan, bewail" (14c.) and directly from Latin lamentari, from lamentum (see lamentation). Related: Lamented; lamenting.


1590s, from Middle French lament and directly from Latin lamentum (see lamentation).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Article for lamenting


a nonnarrative poem expressing deep grief or sorrow over a personal loss. The form developed as part of the oral tradition along with heroic poetry and exists in most languages. Examples include Deor's Lament, an early Anglo-Saxon poem, in which a minstrel regrets his change of status in relation to his patron, and the ancient Sumerian "Lament for the Destruction of Ur." Compare complaint; elegy.

Learn more about lament with a free trial on
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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