Meaning of AGONY in English


ˈagənē, ˈaig-, -ni noun

( -es )

Etymology: Middle English agonie, from Middle French & Late Latin; Middle French agonie, from Late Latin agonia, from Greek agōnia contest, struggle, anguish, from agōn gathering, assembly at games, contest for a prize, from agein to lead, celebrate — more at agent


a. : intense pain of mind or spirit : extreme distress : anguish

the agony of being found wanting and exposed to the disapproval of others — Margaret Mead

b. often capitalized : the sufferings of Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane

and being in an agony he prayed more earnestly — Lk 22:44 (Authorized Version)


a. : intense pain of body : extreme torment : torture

left arm twisted upward behind him … in slow, deliberate agony — Kay Boyle

b. : the throes of death : death struggle

his final agony

3. : a violent struggle, conflict, or contest

the world is convulsed by the agonies of great nations — T.B.Macaulay

4. : a strong sudden and often uncontrollable display (as of joy or delight) : outburst

my cousin … in an agony of mirth — Edith Wharton

Synonyms: see distress

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.