Word of the Day
Sunday, October 30, 2011

Definitions for thanatopsis

  1. A view or contemplation of death.
  2. A poem (1817) by William Cullen Bryant.

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Citations for thanatopsis
Once upon a time not too long ago I was married to a young woman whose every waking moment was underlain by a preoccupation with thanatopsis. Harlan Ellison, Edgeworks
Yet, having heard Khideo's playful thanatopsis—he meant it to be playful—Ilihi looked at him with strange concern. “You sound as if you long for death, but I know it's not true.” said Ilihi. Orson Scott Card, Earthborn
Origin of thanatopsis
Thanatopsis was first used in English by poet William Cullen Bryant in his 1817 poem. The word literally comes from the Greek thanato- meaning death and -opsis meaning likeness or idea.