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Difference Between Sarcastic and Facetious

Sarcastic vs Facetious

Humans vocally communicate with each other through speech. It is also the basis of the written language by which they communicate with people who are far from them or when they want their message to reach a larger number of people.
Through speech, people are able to understand each other and live harmoniously together. Imagine how life would be if people are unable to talk with each other. People use a word or a group of words to make a remark or a statement in order to convey a message.
The remark or statement can have a definite meaning, or it can have a meaning that is the exact opposite of what it actually means. Some are made with the use of idiomatic expressions and figures of speech such as puns and rhetoric.
Some remarks use mockery and irony such as those that can be found in sarcastic remarks and statements. They can also use humor and wit like those that can be found in facetious remarks. While both are spoken by people to convey their feelings in an indirect way, they differ in the way in which they are delivered.
A sarcastic remark is a remark that has a sharp and bitter tinge, usually meant to hurt the person that it is aimed at. It uses the direct opposite of the truth in order to mock and express contempt towards its recipient.
The term “sarcasm” came from the Greek word “sarx” or “sarkos” which means “a piece of meat,” from the Indo-European base word twerk or thwares which means to cut. It evolved into the Greek word sarkamos which means to sneer.
Sometimes people hide the sarcasm of their words behind facetiousness. A facetious remark is intended to be amusing and is therefore not to be taken seriously. It is a statement that is not meant to hurt or harm anyone.
It comes from the Latin word “facetus” which means “witty” and from the French word “facetie” which means “jest.” If someone makes a facetious remark, it must be taken lightly as opposed to a sarcastic remark which can be harsh and cruel.
Calling a person with whom you are having trouble getting along with as your friend is sarcasm. When you say that you love the weather even if you are caught in a thunderstorm without an umbrella or a jacket, is a facetious remark.

1.“Sarcastic” or “sarcasm” comes from the Greek word “sarkamos” which means “to sneer” while “facetious” comes from the Latin word “facetus” which means “witty.”
2.Sarcastic remarks use mockery and irony while facetious remarks use humor and wit.
3.Sarcastic remarks are meant to hurt while facetious remarks are meant to be amusing.
4.A facetious remark can be taken lightly and is not serious while a sarcastic remark can be sharp and bitter.
5.A sarcastic remark uses the direct opposite of the truth to taunt the person whom it is aimed at while a factious remark uses playfulness and jest to convey a message.

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  1. I believe that “with whom you are having trouble getting along with” has one “with” too many. It is acceptable to say “with whom you are having trouble getting along” and, in common speech, ignoring the rule of not ending your sentences with a preposition (which is somewhat over-stated), you could even say “who you are having trouble getting along with” (and, in fact, you could consider “along with” as a phrasal verb, which would be perfectly okay to finish a sentence with – irony intended).

    • Along with would be a compound adverb or adverbial phrase not a phrasal verb. “To smack of” is a phrasal verb and contains a verb which is required of the phrase being used as a phrasal verb; “along with” contains a preposition and an adverb, and lacks a verb, therefore disqualifying it as a phrasal verb and making it more properly a compound adverb even over an adverbial phrase as the syntax you are sighting leaves the preposition dangling without a noun. Prepositions should not be used to end a sentence as they are by their very nature placed before (pre position) a noun in order to change the nouns case, if they do not follow a noun and end a sentence the are positioned in front of nothing and that just defies their name and definition. That is why sentences do not end in prepositions.

  2. I feel like an introduction telling us that “people communicate by language” is a tad bit ridiculous. The whole introduction I felt like, “why am I reading this?” And, “what does this have to do with the subject, the difference between sarcasm and facetious?”

    The rest of the article was a good read. I was left feeling a tad bit unsatisfied by your explanation of “facetious”. Maybe a quick conversation as to why the two are not perfect synonyms would solve the unanswered questions I have.

  3. This is not the difference between modern definitions of sarcasm and facetious. Sarcasm today is generally benign. Today, sarcasm refers to exaggeration to point out that the opposite point is true, where facetiousness exaggerates merely for the aim to be funny.

    Sarcasm “I’ll get right on that”
    Facetious “I’m so hungry I could eat a horse”

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