of, relating to, or being a person who is sexually or romantically attracted to people of their own sex or gender: A gay couple strolled by on the boardwalk.
of, relating to, or being a person who is sexually or romantically attracted only to people of their own sex or gender: Gay and bisexual men are both discussed in this study.
of, indicating, or supporting interests or issues pertaining to gay people or the gay community: He gives charitable contributions to a gay organization.
Older Use. having or showing a merry, lively mood: gay spirits; gay music.
Older Use. bright or showy: gay colors; gay ornaments.
(used especially of women and especially in poetry) beautiful, lofty, noble, or excellent: The learned man hath got the lady gay.
excellent; topnotch: a gay and lofty mind.
Older Use. given to or abounding in social or other pleasures: a gay social season; the Gay Nineties.
Older Use. sexually unrestrained; having loose morals: In the 1930s movie, the baron is referred to as “a gay old rogue with an eye for the ladies.”
Slang: Older Use. inappropriately forward or bold; overly familiar; reckless: George got gay at the Christmas party and suddenly swept his boss's wife onto the dance floor.
Slang: Disparaging and Offensive. awkward, stupid, or bad.
a person, especially a man, who is sexually or romantically attracted to people of the same sex or gender.
a person, especially a man, who is sexually or romantically attracted exclusively to people of the same sex or gender.
in a gay manner.
It has been argued that gay in the sense “awkward, stupid, or bad” is independent of the sexual sense, and therefore not homophobic. This argument is weakened by the fact that the sexual meaning has long been the dominant one, and thus permeates all usages of gay. See also homosexual.
As more specific labels, gay and lesbian often mean exclusive attraction to the same gender, and may be used in contrast with terms like bisexual. And gay can also be used to refer to only men who are attracted to men (exclusively or not), in contrast to lesbian, which only refers to women. Other terms, such as sapphic for women, are sometimes used to be unambiguously inclusive of people attracted to multiple genders.
- gay·ness, noun
- non·gay, adjective
Other definitions for Gay (2 of 2)
John, 1685–1732, English poet and dramatist.
a female or male given name.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use gay in a sentence
Who cares of Barack Hussein Obama is president and gays are getting married?
Pat Robertson wants to talk about the extinction of the gays.
What does that have to do with what “the gays” did to Vinnie?The Real Story Behind the Fight for Marriage Equality | E.J. Graff | December 30, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
A colleague overheard two conservative Mass. lawmakers talking about what “the gays” could do.The Real Story Behind the Fight for Marriage Equality | E.J. Graff | December 30, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
That gays (and other liberals) should choose Canadian oil because Canada “has no laws prohibiting LGBT lifestyle.”How Canadian Oilmen Pinkwash the Keystone Pipeline | Jay Michaelson | December 28, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Richs great success was the production of Gays Beggars Opera in 1727-8.Haunted London | Walter Thornbury
But the spotless kitchen contained a breakfast nook where the Gays always ate their first meal of each day.
Jane was on hand early, helping the Gays to stack the luggage in the back seat and on the rack provided at the rear of the car.
“Happy to meet you, Miss Jane,” returned the landlady as she led the Gays to their accustomed table.
Mr. Frazier himself came up and found two tables for the Gays and the Robinsons.
British Dictionary definitions for gay (1 of 2)
of or for homosexuals: a gay club
carefree and merry: a gay temperament
brightly coloured; brilliant: a gay hat
given to pleasure, esp in social entertainment: a gay life
- gayness, noun
British Dictionary definitions for Gay (2 of 2)
John. 1685–1732, English poet and dramatist; author of The Beggar's Opera (1728)
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
Cultural definitions for gay
Descriptive term for homosexuals.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.