Poignant Definition

Keenly affecting the other senses.
Poignant beauty.
Webster's New World
Evoking pity, compassion, etc.; emotionally touching or moving.
Webster's New World
Sharply painful to the feelings; piercing.
Webster's New World
Physically painful.
American Heritage
Piercing; incisive.
Poignant criticism.
American Heritage

Origin of Poignant

  • Middle English poinaunt from Old French poignant present participle of poindre to prick from Latin pungere peuk- in Indo-European roots

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From Anglo-Norman poynaunt, puignant et al., Middle French poignant, present participle of poindre (“to prick"), from Latin pungō (“prick").

    From Wiktionary

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