comedian
Pronunciation
  • (America) IPA: /kəˈmiːdi.ən/
Noun

comedian (plural comedians) (feminine: comedienne)

  1. An entertainer who performs in a humorous manner, especially by telling jokes.
    Synonyms: comic
  2. (by extension) Any person who is humorous or amusing, either characteristically or on a particular occasion.
    Synonyms: card, cutup, gagster, joker, wag, wit
  3. (dated) A person who performs in theatrical plays.
    Synonyms: actor, player, thespian
    • circa 1606 William Shakespeare, Antony and Cleopatra, Act V, Scene 2,
      […] the quick comedians
      Extemporally will stage us, and present
      Our Alexandrian revels;
    • 1714, Susanna Centlivre, The Wonder, London: E. Curll and A. Bettesworth, Preface,
      I Don’t pretend to write a Preface, either to point out the Beauties, or to excuse the Errors, a judicious Reader may possibly discover in the following Scenes, but to give those excellent Comedians their Due, to whom, in some Measure the best Dramatick Writers are oblig’d.
    • 1755, George Colman the Elder, The Connaisseur, London: R. Baldwin, Volume 1, p. 1,
      When a Comedian, celebrated for his excellence in the part of Shylock, first undertook that character, he made daily visits to the center of business, the ’Change, and the adjacent Coffee-houses; that by a frequent intercourse and conversation with “the unforeskinn’d race,” he might habituate himself to their air and deportment.
    • 1848, William Makepeace Thackeray, Vanity Fair (novel), Chapter 51,
      Becky, the nightingale, took the flowers which he threw to her and pressed them to her heart with the air of a consummate comedian.
  4. (obsolete) A writer of comedies.
    • 1644, John Milton, Areopagitica, London, p. 5,
      Neither is it recorded that the writings of those old Comedians were supprest, though the acting of them were forbid;
    • 1783, Hugh Blair, Lectures on Rhetoric and Belles Lettres, London: Whitestone et al., Volume 3, Lecture 47, p. 377,
      […] the Dramatic Author, in whom the French glory most, and whom they justly place at the head of all their Comedians, is, the famous Molière.
Synonyms Translations


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