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  • Adj.

nostalgic

no-STAL-jik

Context
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When my uncle takes us to the park, he grows nostalgic and emotional as he remembers and longs for his own boyhood there. “Years ago, we played baseball in that field,” he whispered sadly and nostalgically, as if seeing shadows of the golden past. I love hearing Uncle Peter’s nostalgic stories—they make me want to live back when they played the game with wooden bats and sold papers for a dime.

Quiz: What happens when someone feels nostalgic?

  • They look back on something in their past and feel both happy and sad about it.
  • They think about how much fun it would have been to have lived during a different time period.
  • They go off by themselves to find a place where they can relax and avoid a stressful situation.
Definition

Memory Hook
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Not Sick Algae When I was young my father raised trout in many fish ponds which we cleaned tons of algae from; I am not nostalgic about cleaning algae because it made me sick, but I do miss my father more than all the algae and fish in the universe.

Examples
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  • What has happened instead, complain Iranians nostalgic for quieter times, is that Nowruz has taken on stronger nationalist tones and grown more strident. —The Economist
  • A gruff fellow, not one to wax poetic, he called to carry on about a little place he'd just discovered, a cowboy steakhouse with a nostalgic vibe and fine country cooking deep in the hills of the Central Coast. —Los Angeles Times
  • The restaurant, which is housed in a former corner gas station, is both nostalgic and comforting, just like the delicious dish. —Epicurious
  • Thankfully many of our friends still had cribs and changing tables [lying] around in the attic because they felt too nostalgic to get rid of them. —Washington Post

Word Ingredients
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nost a return home
alg pain
-ic like

When one suffers from a nostalgic experience, one feels emotional “pain” as if “returning home” to things that one has loved but which have been lost forever.

Word Theater
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YouTube: V Sauce About being nostalgic.
Nostalgic

Word Constellation
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Nostalgic

Word Variants
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nostalgia n a feeling of homesickness or a longing for the past