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Etymology edit

From Middle English sorweful, from Old English sorhful, sorgful (full of care; anxious; sorrowful), from Proto-Germanic *surgafullaz (full of care; anxious), equivalent to sorrow +‎ -ful. Cognate with Old High German sorgfol (careful; anxious), Norwegian sorgfull (sorrowful), Icelandic sorgfullur (lamentable).

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Adjective edit

sorrowful (comparative more sorrowful, superlative most sorrowful)

  1. exhibiting sorrow; dejected; distraught; sad. (of a person)
  2. Producing sorrow; causing grief.
    sorrowful accident
    • 1900 May 17, L[yman] Frank Baum, chapter 23, in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Chicago, Ill., New York, N.Y.: Geo[rge] M. Hill Co., →OCLC:
      She threw her arms around the Lion's neck and kissed him, patting his big head tenderly. Then she kissed the Tin Woodman, who was weeping in a way most dangerous to his joints. But she hugged the soft, stuffed body of the Scarecrow in her arms instead of kissing his painted face, and found she was crying herself at this sorrowful parting from her loving comrades.

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