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One word to denote a person who derives pleasure from another's misfortune?

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Not sure if sadist could work in this context but it is close. –  Mohit Feb 8 '13 at 6:40
    
A sadist is active and possibly the perpetrator of the misfortune. He is not passive like someone enjoying watching people's misfurtunes –  mplungjan Feb 8 '13 at 6:57
    
I like "sociopath" in this case. "Barbarian" and "troglodyte" also work. –  user21497 Feb 8 '13 at 7:01
    
@Bill - but while a person enjoying schadenfreude may be any of those, none of them tells us that the active word was schadenfreude –  mplungjan Feb 8 '13 at 7:05
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@mplungjan: True enough, but it doesn't have to, does it? I suppose we could coin "schadenfreudean" and maybe even "schadenjungian" and "schadenmarxian". :-) –  user21497 Feb 8 '13 at 7:09

2 Answers 2

Gloater: One who feels or expresses triumphant and malicious satisfaction at another's misfortune.

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thanks! I think gloater fits perfectly –  user37284 Feb 8 '13 at 7:07
    
I don't think gloating relates to satisfaction at another's misfortune. It relates to the overt show of superiority over the loser when they've 'won' or proven the 'loser' wrong. –  Jim Feb 8 '13 at 7:14
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From wikipedia: Gloating is differentiated from Schadenfreude in that it does not necessarily require malice (one may gloat to a friend about having defeated him in a game without ill intent) and that it describes an action rather than a state of mind (one typically gloats to the subject of the misfortune or to a third party). –  mplungjan Feb 8 '13 at 7:17

Sadist: One who derives pleasure through cruelty or pain to others.

The literal definition has a strong physical connotation to it, but the term does often get used loosely.

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A sadist is actively inflicting cruelty. Someone gloating over other's misfortune is likely passively doing so –  mplungjan Feb 8 '13 at 6:58
    
You're referring to the literal definition. I offered and qualified my answer as useful as used more loosely (which the word often is, at least in the states). –  DuckMaestro Feb 8 '13 at 8:01

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