Commiserate vs commensurate

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Commiserate and commensurate are two similar-sounding words that are often confused. We will examine the difference between the words commiserate and commensurate, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences.

Commiserate means to sympathize, to express pity for someone or something. Commiserate may be used as a transitive or an intransitive verb, meaning it may or may not take an object. Related words are commiserates, commiserated, commiserating, commiseration, commiserative, commiseratively. The word commiserate is derived from the Latin word commiseratus, meaning to pity.

Commensurate describes two or more things that are equal, two or more things that are proportional to each other or correspond in degree or size. The word commensurate is an adjective, related words are commensurately, commensuration. The word commensurate is derived from the Latin word commensuratus, which means measuring together.


THE Yoruba Council of Elders (YEC) and Ekiti State chapter of Afenifere have commiserated with Governor Rauf Aregbesola and people of Osun State on the loss of the state’s first civilian Governor Isiaka Adetunji Adeleke. (The Nation)

Paying tribute at the repast, Ambassador Conteh said, “We are here to commiserate with our brother and friend, Chief Cliff Nzeruem, on the passing of his dear mother Mrs. Ezinne Caroline Nzeruem.” (The Liberian Daily Observer)

“The community package is an investment into the community’s most pressing and well-identified needs: public open space, safe multimodal transportation and affordable housing on a scale commensurate with the long-term impact of this massive project and the unprecedented scale of their vacation requests,” Hudson said. (The Capitol Hill Times)

The government has begun discussions to bring rules pertaining to the anti-profiteering provision under Goods and Services Tax (GST) to ensure that companies benefiting from tax reduction ensure a commensurate lowering of prices for the consumer. (The Indian Express)