Word of The Day for Friday, March 11, 2011


By•ron•ic (bahy-RON-ik)  adj

1. of or relating to George Gordon, 6th Baron Byron, the British Romantic poet
2. having characteristics of Byron, such as being melancholic, passionate,  melodramatic, dark, romantically brooding or having disregard for societal norms

Byronism noun; Byronically adverb

1815–25;  Byron  + -ic; after poet Lord Byron (1788-1824), who displayed such characteristics, as did his poetry, i.e. a flawed character marked by great passion who exhibits disrespect for social institutions and is self-destructive.

Sentence Examples:
• With thoughtful gray eyes set deep under a jut of brows and a nose as finely cut as a woman's, it was of a type that, in more sophisticated localities, men would have said had risen to meet the Byronic ideal of which the world was just then enamored. But there was nothing Byronic or self-conscious about David Crystal. He had been born and bred in what was then the Far West, and that he should read poetry and regard life as an undertaking that a man must face with all honor and resoluteness was not so surprising for the time and place.  -The Emigrant Trail, Geraldine Bonner

• There are practical difficulties also in the way of him who would play the Byronic young gentleman. He must be supernaturally wicked--or rather must have been; only, alas! in the unliterary grammar of life, where the future tense stands first, and the past is formed, not from the indefinite, but from the present indicative, "to have been" is "to be"; and to be wicked on a small income is impossible. -The Second Thoughts of An Idle Fellow, Jerome K. Jerome

• It was a glorious sight, yet I know not that I felt more on seeing the bird in all its natural freedom and royalty, than when, imprisoned and insulted, he had filled my early thoughts with the Byronic "silent rages" of misanthropy. -Summer on the Lakes, S.M. Fuller

Sources: Free Dictionary, Wordsmith

Word-E: A Word-A-Day

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