Sartorial vs satirical

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Sartorial and satirical are two words that are similar in spelling and pronunciation, but have different meanings. We will examine the definitions of sartorial and satirical, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences.

Sartorial describes something that is related to clothes, tailoring or the way clothes are worn. Sartorial is an adjective, the adverb form is sartorially. The word sartorial is derived from the Latin word sartor which means tailor.

Satirical describes something that uses humor, exaggeration, ridicule and irony as a way to highlight the shortcomings, abuses or stupidity displayed by people or institutions. A movie, play, novel, essay, song, meme or other form of expression may be satirical. The idea of satirical commentary was pioneered by the Greek playwright Aristophanes in his comic dramas known as Old Comedy. Satirical pieces are designed to point a finger at people or institutions that are abusing their power or doing something that is not in the public interest, usually in the hope that the situation will be rectified. The noun forms are satire and satires, the adverb form is satirically. The word satirical is derived from the Latin word satira, referring to a type of poem.


Since leaving his boy band days behind, Harry has embraced his personal style even more, showing off bold sartorial choices which are flamboyant, fashion-forward and fun. (The Evening Standard)

The designs gracing the catwalk so far — from designers including Alexander Wang, Tom Ford and Jeremy Scott — have certainly brought the drama, but it’s on the sidewalks of New York where true sartorial personality shines through. (Teen Vogue Magazine)

The graphic was created for a different “satirical piece” put together on Friday by sports anchor Mark Giangreco in which viewers were encouraged to invent their own Olympic sports, but it was mistakenly also used for the serious news story read on Saturday by weekend anchor Mark Rivera, Nicholas said. (The Chicago Tribune)

The floats can carry figures of up to seven metres and often represent recent taboo subjects or events in a satirical way. (The Express)