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  1. relating to an elegy, a form of lament and suffering that can be expressed most commonly as a poem or other art form. to be elegiac is to be melancholic or mournful in expressing a loss or grief.
  2. In Sophocles' Oedipus the King, as Oedipus learns of his incestual relationship with his mother, he laments that he is "polluted and unclean" and "[drives]...pins through his eyeballs...until they [are] pulp" (Sophocles). As soon as Oedipus sees the truth of his actions, he makes himself blind because of his remorse and inexplicable suffering.
  3. Robert Motherwell's "Elegies to the Spanish Republic" is a series of paintings expressing public lamentation.
    Motherwell Elegy Spanish Republic XXXIV

    "Elegy to the Spanish Republic XXXIV"