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[kuh-vawrt] /kəˈvɔrt/
verb (used without object)
to prance or caper about.
to behave in a high-spirited, festive manner; make merry.
Origin of cavort
1785-95, Americanism; earlier cavault, perhaps cur(vet) + vault2
Related forms
cavorter, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for cavorting
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • I'd admire to see him cavorting around on the pinnacles after horse-thieves or whisky-runners or a bunch of bad Indians.

    Raw Gold Bertrand W. Sinclair
  • Mnchen with dignity thrown to the winds and cavorting in the dress of a clown!

    An American Girl in Munich Mabel W. Daniels
  • Australia is not yet through the cavorting stage, but it will grow out of it in time, just as other countries have done.

    The Awful Australian Valerie Desmond
  • There were dozens of them, frisking and cavorting in the air.

    The Piebald Hippogriff Karen Anderson
  • From this comes the Americanism cavorting, running or riding round in a heedless or purposeless manner.

    The Slang Dictionary John Camden Hotten
  • The women join the dance, cavorting about unclothed, just as the men do.

    The Land of Tomorrow William B Stephenson, Jr.
British Dictionary definitions for cavorting


(intransitive) to prance; caper
Derived Forms
cavorter, noun
Word Origin
C19: perhaps from curvet
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for cavorting



1793, cauvaut, American English, of uncertain origin, sometimes said to be an alteration of curvet "a leap by a horse," from French and related to curve (v.). Or perhaps from ca- colloquial intensive prefix + vault "to jump, leap." Modern form attested by 1829. Related: Cavorted; cavorting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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