[ shiv-uh-ree, shiv-uh-ree, shuh-riv-uh-ree or, esp. British, shahr-uh-vahr-ee ]
/ ˌʃɪv əˈri, ˈʃɪv əˌri, ʃəˌrɪv əˈri or, esp. British, ˌʃɑr əˈvɑr i /

noun, plural cha·ri·va·ris, verb (used with object), cha·ri·va·ried, cha·ri·va·ri·ing.

Also chivaree, chivari.

Origin of charivari

< French, Middle French, of obscure origin; said to be < Late Latin carībaria headache < Greek karēbaría, equivalent to karē-, combining form of kárā, kárē head + -baria (bar(ys) heavy + -ia -ia), on the hypothesis that such a noisy procession would cause a headache Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for charivari

British Dictionary definitions for charivari


shivaree or esp US chivaree

/ (ˌʃɑːrɪˈvɑːrɪ) /


a discordant mock serenade to newlyweds, made with pans, kettles, etc
a confused noise; din

Word Origin for charivari

C17: from French, from Late Latin caribaria headache, from Greek karēbaria, from karē head + barus heavy
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 charivari



"rough music," especially as a community way of expressing disapproval of a marriage match, 1735, from French charivari, from Old French chalivali "discordant noise made by pots and pans" (14c.), from Late Latin caribaria "a severe headache," from Greek karebaria "headache," from kare "head" + barys "heavy" (see grave (adj.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper