Meaning and Definition

„Morose“ describes a person who is sullen, gloomy, or ill-tempered. When someone is morose, they often appear unhappy, depressed, and unwilling to engage in social interactions. The term conveys a deeper level of sadness or melancholy than simply being in a bad mood.


„Morose“ is pronounced as /məˈroʊs/. Here’s how to break it down:

  • : as in „ma“ in „machine“
  • roʊs: rhymes with „dose“


The word „morose“ comes from the Latin word „morosus,“ which means „peevish“ or „self-willed.“ Over time, it evolved to denote a more general sense of gloominess and sullenness.

Usage in Sentences

Understanding how to use „morose“ in context is essential for mastering its meaning. Here are some examples:

  1. After hearing the bad news, he became morose and withdrawn, avoiding conversation with his friends.
  2. The morose expression on her face made it clear that she was deeply troubled by the recent events.
  3. Despite the festive atmosphere, he remained morose, lost in his own thoughts.


To further grasp the meaning of „morose,“ it helps to look at some synonyms. These include:

  • Sullen
  • Gloomy
  • Melancholy
  • Depressed
  • Downcast
  • Pessimistic

Each of these words carries a slightly different nuance but shares the common theme of sadness and a lack of cheerfulness.


Conversely, understanding antonyms can also provide clarity. Words that are the opposite of „morose“ include:

  • Cheerful
  • Happy
  • Joyful
  • Optimistic
  • Upbeat

These words depict a positive and bright state of mind, contrasting sharply with the gloominess of being morose.

Contextual Nuances

„Morose“ is often used to describe a prolonged or habitual state rather than a temporary mood. For example, if someone is having a bad day, they might be described as „upset“ or „sad,“ but if their demeanor is persistently gloomy over a longer period, „morose“ becomes more fitting.

Cultural References

The word „morose“ frequently appears in literature and film to describe characters who embody a sense of deep-seated unhappiness or brooding temperament. For instance, many classic literary characters, such as Heathcliff from Emily Brontë’s „Wuthering Heights,“ can be described as morose due to their dark and brooding nature.


„Morose“ is a powerful word that effectively conveys a deep and often persistent state of gloominess or sullenness. By understanding its meaning, pronunciation, and usage, you can enrich your English vocabulary and better express complex emotional states. Whether you encounter it in literature or conversation, recognizing the nuances of „morose“ will enhance your comprehension and communication skills.

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