I'm looking for a word that describes making a passionate expression of how sorry you feel for someone.

A bit like "sanctimonious" means making a big show of how moral you are.

Or "outrage" is a passionate display of anger or disapproval.

I'm looking for similar to express compassion or pity in an exaggerated or passionate way.

For example: "as a display of his [extreme compassion] Bob wept when discussing the plight of the victims"

  • [feeling extremely sorry for someone=grammar]
    – Lambie
    Jul 6 at 16:16

I suggest commiseration, which Lexico gives as


1 Sympathy and sorrow for the misfortunes of others; compassion.

So the sentence could be

As a display of his commiseration Bob wept when discussing the plight of the victims.


If Bob wasn't weeping crocodile tears but was genuinely lachrymose, he was empathizing with the victims.

Empathy: the action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another of either the past or present without having the feelings, thoughts, and experience fully communicated in an objectively explicit manner

also : the capacity for this

[Merriam-Webster Dictionary]

Instead, if Bob was just showing false sympathy to the victims, he could be accused of smarm

Smarmy: revealing or marked by a smug, ingratiating, or false earnestness

[Merriam-Webster Dictionary]

a tone of smarmy self-satisfaction — New Yorker


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