[bey-thos, -thaws, -thohs]
a ludicrous descent from the exalted or lofty to the commonplace; anticlimax.
insincere pathos; sentimentality; mawkishness.
triteness or triviality in style.

1630–40; < Greek: depth

bathos, pathos.

2. maudlinness, tearfulness; mush, gush, schmaltz. 3. insipidity, inanity. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
bathos (ˈbeɪθɒs)
1.  a sudden ludicrous descent from exalted to ordinary matters or style in speech or writing
2.  insincere or excessive pathos
3.  triteness; flatness
4.  the lowest point; nadir
[C18: from Greek: depth, from bathus deep]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

"anticlimax, a descent from the sublime to the ridiculous," 1727, from Gk. bathos "depth," related to bathys "deep;" introduced by Pope.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Britannica


(from Greek bathys, "deep"), unsuccessful, and therefore ludicrous, attempt to portray pathos in art, i.e., to evoke pity, sympathy, or sorrow. The term was first used in this sense by Alexander Pope in his treatise Peri Bathous; or, The Art of Sinking in Poetry (1728). Bathos may result from an inappropriately dignified treatment of the commonplace, the use of elevated language and imagery to describe trivial subject matter, or from such an exaggeration of pathos (emotion provoked by genuine suffering) as to become overly sentimental or ridiculous.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
But there is nothing but excess, self-indulgence and bathos.
And in reading their requests the bathos of the ultimate penalty is impossible
  to ignore.
The film is an unqualified delight, never descending into sloppy sentiment or
  boggy bathos.
In essence, it is this portion of the drama that is often awash in the sudsy
  waves of bathos.
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