Adjective "agony" definition and examples

(Agony may not be an adjective, but it can be used as an adjective, click here to find out.)



Definitions and examples


Extreme physical or mental suffering.
  1. 'At least the physical agonies that students undergo will be restricted or minimised.'
  2. 'As families are forced to empty out the contents of their cluttered home onto the back lawn, we'll see the trauma and agonies as they decide what stays and what goes.'
  3. 'The hospital is filthy, without drugs, and women who used to be nurses sit in the corner doing embroidery while patients suffer agonies without pain relief.'
  4. 'Mr Handley, like so many of his fellow farmers up and down the land, must have been suffering agonies of worry as the weeks grind on and foot and mouth continues to ravage the land.'
  5. 'Dapper of dress and genial of manner, Corbett seems the antithesis of the tortured comic suffering endless agonies for his art.'
  6. 'For years, he has suffered the nightmares and the agonies that, by all rights, should be ours too.'
  7. 'Very many others suffered those same physical agonies.'
  8. 'And therein lies a clue that perhaps this superman can in fact be tripped up by an opponent who fights through the pain to inflict agonies of his own.'
  9. 'And next month the agonies begin all over again.'
  10. 'The problem was the poor woman then had to cope with a set of false teeth for the rest of her life with all the attendant agonies of wondering whether you can bite into an apple without leaving your teeth embedded into it.'
  11. 'his last agony'
  12. 'Diaries kept by two of them recorded the indescribable agonies they had suffered as their lives ebbed slowly away.'
  13. 'Only by concerted action can we counter the sheer humanity of those who wish to prolong the agony of death.'

More definitions

noun, plural agonies.

1. extreme and generally prolonged pain; intense physical or mental suffering.

2. a display or outburst of intense mental or emotional excitement: an agony of joy.

3. the struggle preceding natural death: mortal agony.

4. a violent struggle.

5. (often initial capital letter) Theology. the sufferings of Christ in the garden of Gethsemane.


Late Middle English (originally denoting mental anguish alone): via Old French and late Latin from Greek agōnia, from agōn ‘contest’. The sense of physical suffering dates from the early 17th century.