[boi-uhnt, boo-yuhnt]
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Origin of buoyant

First recorded in 1570–80; buoy + -ant
Related formsbuoy·ant·ly, adverbnon·buoy·ant, adjectivenon·buoy·ant·ly, adverbun·buoy·ant, adjectiveun·buoy·ant·ly, adverb

Synonyms for buoyant

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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for buoyant

Contemporary Examples of buoyant

Historical Examples of buoyant

  • I breathed freely, and my form seemed to expand itself with buoyant life.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • Light and buoyant as the child was, her tightened clasp had begun to tell on him.


    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • It was difficult to remain long angry with so buoyant a nature.

  • Hydrogen is the lightest and consequently the most buoyant of all known gases.

    Flying Machines

    W.J. Jackman and Thos. H. Russell

  • Nor, as the days went by, did this buoyant happiness ever fail him.

    The Underdog

    F. Hopkinson Smith

British Dictionary definitions for buoyant


  1. able to float in or rise to the surface of a liquid
  2. (of a liquid or gas) able to keep a body afloat or cause it to rise
  3. cheerful or resilient

Word Origin for buoyant

C16: probably from Spanish boyante, from boyar to float, from boya buoy, ultimately of Germanic origin
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 buoyant

1570s, perhaps from Spanish boyante, present participle of boyar "to float," from boya "buoy," from Dutch boei (see buoy (n.)). Of personalities, etc., from c.1748. Related: Buoyantly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper