• synonyms


[shiv-uh-ree, shiv-uh-ree, shuh-riv-uh-ree or, esp. British, shahr-uh-vahr-ee]
noun, plural cha·ri·va·ris, verb (used with object), cha·ri·va·ried, cha·ri·va·ri·ing.
  1. shivaree.
Show More
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
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for charivari

Historical Examples of charivari

  • The first of his poems that appeared was called "The Charivari."

    Barn and the Pyrenees

    Louisa Stuart Costello

  • Landells, introduced to him by Last, approached him on the subject of the "Charivari."

    The History of "Punch"

    M. H. Spielmann

  • Then he published in the Charivari an open letter to the king.

  • Some of the charivari party had to fly, or they might have ended their days in the penitentiary.

  • A few days after the charivari affair, Mrs. D—— stepped in to see me.

British Dictionary definitions for charivari


shivaree or esp US chivaree

  1. a discordant mock serenade to newlyweds, made with pans, kettles, etc
  2. a confused noise; din
Show More

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.)).

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper