bathos /ˈbeɪθɒs/


I. noun [ mass noun]

1. (especially in a literary work) an effect of anticlimax created by an unintentional lapse in mood from the sublime to the trivial or ridiculous.

his epic poem has passages of almost embarrassing bathos.
a nice balance between the colloquial, which might have led to bathos, and an over-polished style.
– origin mid 17th cent. (first recorded in the Greek sense): from Greek, literally ‘depth’. The current sense was introduced by Alexander Pope in the early 18th cent.

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