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gayety

[gey-i-tee]
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noun, plural gay·e·ties.
  1. gaiety.
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gaiety

or gay·e·ty

[gey-i-tee]
noun, plural gai·e·ties.
  1. the state of being joyous, vivacious, or cheerful.
  2. Often gaieties. merrymaking or festivity: the gaieties of the New Year season.
  3. showiness; finery: gaiety of dress.
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Origin of gaiety

1625–35; < French gaieté, equivalent to gai gay + -té -ty2
Related formssu·per·gai·e·ty, noun

Synonyms

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1. merriment, mirth, glee, jollity, joyousness, liveliness, sportiveness, hilarity, vivacity, cheerfulness, joviality. 3. brilliance, glitter, flashiness, gaudiness.

Antonyms

1. sadness.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for gayety

Historical Examples

  • The gayety of a light-hearted maiden is often unmixed with boldness, or crime.

    Philothea

    Lydia Maria Child

  • But he must conceal his chagrin, and assume the smile of gayety.

  • Cleopatra called him, with a note of gayety in her voice, to help her off "the elephant."

    It Happened in Egypt

    C. N. Williamson

  • True, Miss Merton; but the country is in the height of its gayety too.

  • Of course I have seen many boys full of life and gayety and music.

    A Spirit in Prison

    Robert Hichens


British Dictionary definitions for gayety

gaiety

noun plural -ties
  1. the state or condition of being merry, bright, or lively
  2. festivity; merrymaking
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Also (esp US): gayety

xref

See gay
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 gayety

n.

see gaiety.

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gaiety

n.

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.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper