View synonyms for frivolous


[ friv-uh-luhs ]


  1. characterized by lack of seriousness or sense:

    frivolous conduct.

  2. self-indulgently carefree; unconcerned about or lacking any serious purpose.
  3. (of a person) given to trifling or undue levity:

    a frivolous, empty-headed person.

    Synonyms: foolish, silly, idle, puerile, childish

    Antonyms: serious

  4. of little or no weight, worth, or importance; not worthy of serious notice:

    a frivolous suggestion.

    Synonyms: flimsy, trivial, paltry, petty, trifling, light

    Antonyms: weighty


/ ˈfrɪvələs; frɪˈvɒlɪtɪ /


  1. not serious or sensible in content, attitude, or behaviour; silly

    a frivolous remark

  2. unworthy of serious or sensible treatment; unimportant

    frivolous details

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Derived Forms

  • ˈfrivolously, adverb
  • ˈfrivolousness, noun
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Other Words From

  • friv·o·lous·ly adverb
  • friv·o·lous·ness noun
  • un·friv·o·lous adjective
  • un·friv·o·lous·ness noun
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Word History and Origins

Origin of frivolous1

First recorded in 1425–75; late Middle English, from Latin frīvolus “worthless, trifling”; -ous
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Word History and Origins

Origin of frivolous1

C15: from Latin frīvolus silly, worthless
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Example Sentences

Yet space, to many, feels more frivolous, and thus gets hit harder by critics.

From Time

The lawyers for the Sandy Hook relatives have asked the judge in the case to rule that the proposed deposition of Clinton would be “unnecessary and frivolous.”

These days, AC is starting to sound like a less frivolous choice.

At its core, Cusack’s argument is that prosecutor-less prosecutions erode one of the major safeguards that protects people — often but not exclusively homeless people — against frivolous criminal cases.

During those interviews, the two brothers flitted between frivolous family chatter and serious discussion of coronavirus policy.

In Northanger Abbey, Jane Austen defends the novel against critics who dismiss it as frivolous and feminine.

The 1996 filing (which you can check out here) was, naturally, as silly and frivolous as the boycott push that came before it.

Mizell called the Justice Department “arrogant” for bringing this frivolous case to the court.

“This is silly in its context but serious in its purpose, it is not frivolous,” Pelosi says.

Blogging is a lifestyle agenda that can pay the bills, it becomes a serious business of frivolous things.

Many denounce the system of morning calls as silly, frivolous, and a waste of time.

Romarino paid a little court to her in his frivolous way; but she did not observe it, or, at all events, took no notice of it.

If the invention be frivolous or pernicious, the inventor cannot secure for it legal protection.

I am going to be frivolous, coquette, and imagine myself a girl of the old Southern Set, when there were no new people.

Scarcely anything has been written against the French Academy, except frivolous and insipid pleasantries.