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90s Slang You Should Know


[pley-fuh l] /ˈpleɪ fəl/
full of play or fun; sportive; frolicsome.
pleasantly humorous or jesting:
a playful remark.
Origin of playful
First recorded in 1200-50, playful is from the Middle English word pleiful. See play, -ful
Related forms
playfully, adverb
playfulness, noun
half-playful, adjective
half-playfully, adverb
half-playfulness, noun
unplayful, adjective
unplayfully, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for playfulness
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • She put aside the playfulness in which his grim earnest veiled itself.

    Adrienne Toner Anne Douglas Sedgwick
  • "I wonder who lives in the castle," she responded to his mood of playfulness.

    From the Car Behind Eleanor M. Ingram
  • Some emotion, or exhaustion from the strain of the swimmer's breath in speech, stopped her playfulness.

  • Anecdotes of his wit, playfulness, and extraordinary precocity.

    Roundabout Papers William Makepeace Thackeray
  • I like your Susan very much; she is a sweet creature, her playfulness of fancy is very delightful.

  • Lady Calmady's playfulness had returned, but with a new complexion.

British Dictionary definitions for playfulness


full of high spirits and fun: a playful kitten
good-natured and humorous: a playful remark
Derived Forms
playfully, adverb
playfulness, 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 playfulness



mid-13c., from play (v.) + -ful. Related: Playfully; playfulness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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