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frivolous

[friv-uh-luh s]
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adjective
  1. characterized by lack of seriousness or sense: frivolous conduct.
  2. self-indulgently carefree; unconcerned about or lacking any serious purpose.
  3. (of a person) given to trifling or undue levity: a frivolous, empty-headed person.
  4. of little or no weight, worth, or importance; not worthy of serious notice: a frivolous suggestion.

Origin of frivolous

1425–75; late Middle English < Latin frīvolus worthless, trifling; see -ous
Related formsfriv·o·lous·ly, adverbfriv·o·lous·ness, nounun·friv·o·lous, adjectiveun·friv·o·lous·ly, adverbun·friv·o·lous·ness, noun
Can be confusedfrivolity frivolousness

Synonyms

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3. idle, silly, foolish, childish, puerile. 4. light, trifling, petty, paltry, trivial, flimsy.

Antonyms

3. serious. 4. weighty.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for frivolously

Historical Examples

  • “Then you still would have a chance to marry each other,” I said frivolously.

    The Love Affairs of an Old Maid

    Lilian Bell

  • Oh, but we mustn't talk so frivolously when that poor man may be dying.

  • You can take it as seriously or as frivolously as you please.

  • She thought her too fashionably dressed, frivolously gay and vain.

    War and Peace

    Leo Tolstoy

  • I know that you have plenty of money, but that is no reason why you should waste it so frivolously.

    Dear Enemy

    Jean Webster


British Dictionary definitions for frivolously

frivolous

adjective
  1. not serious or sensible in content, attitude, or behaviour; sillya frivolous remark
  2. unworthy of serious or sensible treatment; unimportantfrivolous details
Derived Formsfrivolously, adverbfrivolousness or frivolity (frɪˈvɒlɪtɪ), noun

Word Origin

C15: from Latin frīvolus silly, worthless
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

Word Origin and History for frivolously

frivolous

adj.

mid-15c., from Latin frivolus "silly, empty, trifling, worthless, brittle," diminutive of *frivos "broken, crumbled," from friare "break, rub away, crumble." Related: Frivolously; frivolousness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper