Difference Between Condole and Console

Sympathizing over a loss can be expressed by two terms in English. These two words are – condole and console. There is a lot of confusion and dilemma over both words.

Though both are used to provide sympathy over sorrow but have distinct differences and are used in a different context.

Condole vs Console

The main difference between condole and console is that condole is an intransitive verb while the console is a transitive verb. The term condole is followed by ‘with’ while the term console is not followed by ‘with’. In case of a loss that involves the death of any person, the death can be referred to with the word “condole” while the family can be referred to with the word “console”.

Condole vs Console

Condole expresses sorrow or sympathetic sorrow for someone undergoing a loss. It is used in serious and formal settings and usually denotes the death of a person. The corresponding noun of the word “condole” is condolence.

On the other hand, the word ‘console’ expresses comfort to the grieving person so that it can lessen the sorrow. It includes efforts to stand beside the other person. It is used in informal and personal settings.

The word can be used in various domains of loss and is not limited to the death of a person.

Comparison Table Between Condole and Console

Parameters of ComparisonCondoleConsole
Meaning To express sorrow or sympathy for someone To comfort a person at a time when he/she is undergoing grief or disappointment
UsageIt is used in formal and serious settings It is used in informal and for a wider range of losses and sorrows
TypeIt is an intransitive verbIt is a transitive verb
Denotes Denotes sympathetic sorrow for a loss Denotes sympathetic sorrow as well as comfort and solace to overcome that loss
Examples The company members visit the hospital to condole the employee’s death I tried to console her but he kept weeping and said it was all his fault

What is Condole?

Condole is an expression of sympathetic sorrow with a person, individual, or group who is currently suffering. It can be used to express grief with the individual or group after a loss.

The loss is generally in the form of death. Condole is an intransitive verb. The noun in correspondence of condoling in plural form is condolence.

In contrast, to condole, condolence is a noun. Condole is a traditional word. It has a formal meaning and is used in professional settings. Condole is suitable for written settings which express sorrow. The pronunciation of the word condole is “Kuhn-dole”.

Condole means to grieve and feel sorrow after misfortune or loss in earlier terms. The word was later revised. The current meaning of the word is to express sympathy to a person who is under grieve or experiencing a huge loss.

To lament and grieve over can be termed as condoling.

Condole word is followed by the word “with”. Condole can be used in sense of absolute.

Exemplar sentences would be “I condoled my friend over the loss of his father”, “Politicians unite to condole the death of the great prime minister ” and many other such sentences could be formed.

What is Console?

Console means to express sympathy and yet try to comfort the person who is grieving. The efforts to try to make the person feel less disheartened over the loss can be collectively termed as a console.

The pronunciation of the word console is “Kuh-n-sohl”.

Unlike condole, it does not only provide an expression of sympathy but also efforts to cheer, soothe and comfort the other person.

It is used in informal and intimate settings where the latter genuinely cares for the former who is under deep sorrow. Console involves emotional attachment and connotation and has the feeling of warmth.

The console has a wide meaning. It can be used for losses in various domains and fields. Whenever a person is upset, dejected, or disappointed, the word console holds acceptable.

It can be used to alleviate the trouble, grief, or sense of loss of someone. Example sentences are “I tried to console the sobbing women”, “We should have tried to console the child, but we peeved”.

The console can also be used as a noun. The meaning thereby changes. Console as a noun means the controls of any electronic devices by which the device can be controlled and functioned.

It can be a computer console, root console, system console, or even cabinet for infotainment systems

Main Differences Between Condole and Console

  1. Condole refers to the expression of sympathy for sorrow while console refers to the expression of sympathy as well as efforts to comfort the other person under grieve.
  2. Condole is a formal term while the console is an informal term.
  3. Condole is suitable in written format over cards and letters while console involves physical efforts for the other person.
  4. Condole is used in serious sorrow settings like death while the console is used for a wider range of loss and is not limited to death.
  5. Condole is an intransitive verb while the console is a verb.
Difference Between Condole and Console


Both the words seem similar. They have a similar meaning and usage especially for someone who is under grieve. It is used for individuals who have suffered some kind of loss.

People often get confused with both words and use them interchangeably. Their spelling is set apart only by a single letter.

Both the words are semantically related in topics of sympathy over the loss. The domain of loss could be diverse and varied and hence the usage of both words are different.

Condole is a formal word that could be used in national and international terms while the console is an informal word that could be used in personal terms.

Condole does not include efforts and only sympathy while console includes efforts. Both the words are used in the context of deep sorrow or setback. The person under grieve is addressed using these two terms.


  1. https://elibrary.ru/item.asp?id=44311385
  2. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-319-32064-9_4
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