I've looked at definitions of both "passionate" and "passional", and they are pretty much the same, but I can't help but feel being passionate is different from being passional

  • 2
    The difference is mainly that nobody uses 'passional'. It is archaic, specialised and literary. – Michael Harvey Feb 16 '20 at 21:38

I had to look up "passional," as I've never heard it used this way. "Passionate" is the normal way of describing something having a lot of passion: passionate lovers, a passionate interest in astronomy.

"Passional" means "of or relating to passion" rather than "filled with passion," and might be used if you were academically describing the effects of passion as opposed to some other factor. Passional is also a noun referring to certain Christian texts, which may well be its most common use.

99% of the time, "passionate" is the right word and "passional" will get you funny looks.

  • I see. I got this confusion mainly because "passionate" is translated to my mother tongue as an adjective that has a positive charge, while the word we use for when people are overly dramatic about something or have a tendency to respond to things with stronger emotions all the time is passional. Is there a proper adjective for that kind of person? – AnFa Feb 16 '20 at 22:13
  • You would call such a person "overly dramatic". – James K Feb 16 '20 at 23:36
  • A common British term for such people, of either sex, is 'drama queen'. – Michael Harvey Feb 17 '20 at 17:39

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