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[glee-fuh l] /ˈgli fəl/
full of exultant joy; merry; delighted.
Origin of gleeful
First recorded in 1580-90; glee1 + -ful
Related forms
gleefully, adverb
gleefulness, noun
ungleeful, adjective
ungleefully, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for gleeful
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • In the dance she was the nimblest, in mirth the most gleeful, and in beauty peerless.

  • "No, indeed," returned Dr. Sheepshanks, with a gleeful laugh.

    Funny Big Socks Sarah L. Barrow
  • She gave a gleeful chuckle as she recognized a dear, familiar script.

    Grace Harlowe's Golden Summer Jessie Graham Flower
  • "I'll bring her to you in a jiffy;" and the gleeful doctor departed on his errand.

    Eventide Effie Afton
  • From wondering sobriety Jewel's lips broke into a gleeful smile.

    Jewel Clara Louise Burnham
British Dictionary definitions for gleeful


full of glee; merry
Derived Forms
gleefully, adverb
gleefulness, noun
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 gleeful

1580s, from glee + -ful. Related: Gleefully. Alternative gleesome attested from c.1600.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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