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Tragic flaw.

[Greek, from hamartanein, to miss the mark, err.]


(Literary & Literary Critical Terms) literature the flaw in character which leads to the downfall of the protagonist in a tragedy
[C19: from Greek]

trag′ic flaw′

a character defect that causes the downfall of the protagonist of a tragedy.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.hamartia - the character flaw or error of a tragic hero that leads to his downfallhamartia - the character flaw or error of a tragic hero that leads to his downfall
flaw - defect or weakness in a person's character; "he had his flaws, but he was great nonetheless"
References in periodicals archive ?
Mardonius, predictably, designates the sexual desire as a tragic hamartia.
Music Break Thru Music: Battle For Metal Fest 2015 Round 2 with special guests On Your Deathbed, Secrecy, Sawtopsy, My Hamartia, Kimachi, Without Warning, Ashen Wings, Hadrons Collide, Dim The Lights, 6 p.
What ensures the fear is, of course, the dramatization of the horrible ends to which hamartia has led (as when Sophocles shows Thebes smitten with plague as a result of Oedipus' sins).
His hamartia, and that quality which encourages his audience to empathize with him, is his refusal to recognize the unsustainability of his generosity in a parasitic capitalist society in which the other members hoard their wealth.
40) Nelson has indicated that Brady makes a mistake in killing Pug Rothbaum, suggesting the Classical idea of hamartia or a fatal error (Aristotle Poetics 1453a): 'That is part of Brady's problem: he's impetuous, violent, and resorts to primitive extremes' (Giroux 2010).
Else, el termino hamartia corresponde a un error de juicio fruto de la "ignorancia" del protagonista con "respecto a ciertos detalles" de su propia vida (383).
And, according to Lewis, his hamartia is "an excess of the quality Greene calls pity--an inability to watch disappointment or suffering in others--with this portion perhaps of pride, that he feels it particularly incumbent upon himself to relieve pain.
33) In those scenes we are in turn witnessing both a satire of and kind of extrapolation of Epicurean ideas and furthermore a parody of the tragic hamartia (failure to recognize--in Actaeon's case, seeing too much and in Narcissus' both seeing too much and failing to recognise simultaneously) and anagnorisis.
If hamartia is culpable error, (116) tragedies that end up with calamities do not call into question the teleology of human events.
But those two passages and Rom 4:7, a citation of the Old Testament, are the only three times he uses hamartia in the plural.
Accordingly, the hero's downward movement through Hell contrasts two different experiences: that of the privileged hero who is affected by hamartia but holds the hope of redemption vis-a-vis the irreparable doom of the denizens of Hell.
La Numancia, the play, is consistent with just such a conception of hamartia, in that moral burden is placed on either of the two agents, Numancia or Rome.