pompos-, pompous-

(Latin: self-important, pretentious, inflated ego)

pomposity (s) (noun), pomposities (pl)
1. Documents that appear to be way beyond understanding by the average person: Legal documents are well-known for their pomposity because they usually have so much specialized jargon or vocabulary beyond what most people can comprehend.
2. Someone who presents himself or herself as being magnificent or much more important than anyone else: There is a candidate running for President of the U.S. who expresses a great deal of pomposity regarding his wealth as a successful businessman and how much more he can achieve than any of the others who are running for the office.

Although the visitor who attended the commencement had some good things to say, those to whom he talked doubted his pomposities when he bragged about his great successes since graduating two years ago from that same high school.

pompous (adjective), more pompous, most pompous
1. Characteristic of an excessive self-esteem or an exaggerated self-importance: The university newspaper expressed some of the students' feelings that there was a pompous professor who seemed to think that he was much too qualified to teach students who had such a minimal amount of intelligence.
2. A reference to someone who tries to be seen as being magnificent or very important: Whenever the star sportsman appeared on TV, he had a pompous attitude which upset some viewers.
3. Etymology: borrowed from Old French pompe, "magnificence" and directly from Late Latin pomposus, "stately"; from Latin pompa, "stately display, stately procession".

In Church Latin, used in deprecatory sense (expressing disapproval or criticism) for a "worldly display, vain show (excessively proud)."

Descriptive of someone who has an exaggerated feeling of self-importance.
© ALL rights are reserved.

Go to this Word A Day Revisited Index
so you can see more of Mickey Bach's cartoons.

pompously (adverb), more pompously, most pompously
Relating to someone who speaks and behaves in a very formal or official way because such a person is convinced that he or she is better, smarter, and more important than anyone else: The president of the company pompously dismissed the suggestion made by one of his salesmen that certain changes should be made to improve the manufacturing of their products.
pompousness (s) (noun) (usually no plural)
Irritatingly magnificent or highly self-important: The pompousness at the retirement dinner for the administrator of the small business was an occasion full of speeches containing excessive praises and formal toasts referring to his outstanding skills.
unpomously (adverb), more unpomously, most unpomously
Characteristic of avoiding the glorification of oneself: As talented as Joan was as a singer, she was unpomously friendly with her fellow performers including those who were amateurs.
unpompous (adjective), more unpompous, most unpompous
Conveying a lack of pretending that one is wonderful and not glorifying oneself; unpretentious demeanor or behavior; humility: Despite the fact that Mike was the most knowledgeable computer expert in his company, he was an unpompous fellow who never bragged about his many successful accomplishments.
unpompousness (s) (noun) (no plural)
A situation where there is no bragging or self-glorification: The unpompousness of the most outstanding honors student, who spoke at the commencement ceremony, included an overwhelming praise of his teachers to whom he gave full credit for his successful accomplishments.