or gay·ly

See more synonyms for gaily on

Origin of gaily

Middle English word dating back to 1350–1400; see origin at gay, -ly Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for gaily

Contemporary Examples of gaily

Historical Examples of gaily

  • "Brighten your lovely features with a smile, Katherine me dear," she said gaily.

    Her Father's Daughter

    Gene Stratton-Porter

  • The Chevrotte was gaily singing, and she plunged into it like a startled fawn.

    The Dream

    Emile Zola

  • She climbed quickly into the carriage and said gaily: "Go ahead, Sami!"

  • "But we were bound to go somewhere, my dear fellow," she gaily answered.

  • She had too often asked him (no matter how gaily) what he heard about her, too often begged him not to hear anything.

    Alice Adams

    Booth Tarkington

British Dictionary definitions for gaily


  1. in a lively manner; cheerfully
  2. with bright colours; showily
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 gaily

also gayly, late 14c., from Middle English gai (see gay) + -ly (2). "The spelling gaily is the more common, and is supported by the only existing analogy, that of daily" [OED].

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper