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[jawn-tee, jahn-] /ˈdʒɔn ti, ˈdʒɑn-/
adjective, jauntier, jauntiest.
easy and sprightly in manner or bearing:
to walk with a jaunty step.
smartly trim, as clothing:
a jaunty hat.
Origin of jaunty
1655-65; earlier jentee, juntee < French gentil noble, gentle, genteel with ending taken as -y1
Related forms
jauntily, adverb
jauntiness, noun
unjaunty, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for jaunty
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • So there he was, arrayed in jaunty cap, and a swallow-tailed coat with brass buttons.

  • He would have to dissemble, and he rejoined his party with what he intended for a jaunty air.

    The Tinted Venus F. Anstey
  • The jaunty airs and scornful disregard began to warm Thistlewood's blood a little.

    Bulldog And Butterfly David Christie Murray
  • What a jaunty, ugly, devil-may-care set of fellows they were!

    Ben Comee M. J. (Michael Joseph) Canavan
  • She brought out from her trunk a dark blue velvet suit and a cap of the same with a jaunty bird's wing on one side.

  • He could not resist the temptation, also, of purchasing a small, jaunty cane.

    Tom, The Bootblack Horatio Alger
British Dictionary definitions for jaunty


adjective -tier, -tiest
sprightly, self-confident, and cheerful; brisk: a jaunty step
smart; trim: a jaunty hat
Derived Forms
jauntily, adverb
jauntiness, noun
Word Origin
C17: from French gentil noble; see genteel
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 jaunty

1660s, "elegant, stylish," from French gentil "nice, pleasing," in Old French "noble" (see gentle). Form reflects attempt to render the French pronunciation of gentil. Meaning "easy and sprightly in manner" first attested 1670s. Related: Jauntily; jauntiness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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