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or gayety

[gey-i-tee] /ˈgeɪ ɪ ti/
noun, plural gaieties.
the state of being joyous, vivacious, or cheerful.
Often, gaieties. merrymaking or festivity:
the gaieties of the New Year season.
showiness; finery:
gaiety of dress.
Origin of gaiety
1625-35; < French gaieté, equivalent to gai gay + -té -ty2
Related forms
supergaiety, noun
1. merriment, mirth, glee, jollity, joyousness, liveliness, sportiveness, hilarity, vivacity, cheerfulness, joviality. 3. brilliance, glitter, flashiness, gaudiness.
1. sadness. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for gaiety
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • When he was not suffering he was full of life, and even of gaiety.

    Hugh Arthur Christopher Benson
  • "Why don't you wait a little while, and I'll tell you all the news," he said with an assumption of gaiety.

    Jack O' Judgment Edgar Wallace
  • The husbands, brothers, and lovers had come in, and the scene was redolent of gaiety.

    The Minister's Wooing Harriet Beecher Stowe
  • Was it not her duty to manage a little society and gaiety for her sisters sometimes?

    Robert Elsmere Mrs. Humphry Ward
  • Her children were glad to get away from their home and find otherwhere the freedom and gaiety denied them there.

  • gaiety covered the melancholy, almost sombre depths in her character.

    Robert Orange John Oliver Hobbes
  • "I know; I am very cross and disagreeable," said Cynthia, with a resolute assumption of gaiety.

    A Life Sentence Adeline Sergeant
  • He was gayer than ever before, with the gaiety of his nature, not of the part which he had played.

    The Art of Disappearing John Talbot Smith
  • We were streaming with perspiration, but our gaiety increased, instead of diminishing, with the dangers.

British Dictionary definitions for gaiety


noun (pl) -ties
the state or condition of being merry, bright, or lively
festivity; merrymaking
Also (esp US) gayety
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 gaiety

1630s, from French gaieté, from gai "gay" (see gay). In the 1890s, especially with reference to a London theater of that name, and the kind of musical shows and dancing girls found there.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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