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verb (used without object), rev·eled, rev·el·ing or (especially British) rev·elled, rev·el·ling.
  1. to take great pleasure or delight (usually followed by in): to revel in luxury.
  2. to make merry; indulge in boisterous festivities.
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  1. boisterous merrymaking or festivity; revelry.
  2. Often revels. an occasion of merrymaking or noisy festivity with dancing, masking, etc.
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Origin of revel

1275–1325; (v.) Middle English revelen < Old French reveler to raise tumult, make merry < Latin rebellāre to rebel; (noun) Middle English < Old French, derivative of reveler
Related formsrev·el·er; especially British, rev·el·ler, nounrev·el·ment, nounun·rev·el·ing, adjectiveun·rev·el·ling, adjective


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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

rejoice, bask, enjoy, wallow, rollick, riot, carouse, savor, crow, relish, delight, luxuriate, gloat, indulge, lark, roister, frolic, roll, thrive

Examples from the Web for revelling

Historical Examples

  • She is trifling with me, and very likely she is now revelling in her triumph.

    The Memoires of Casanova, Complete

    Jacques Casanova de Seingalt

  • Do you dream that, while you have been revelling, she has been idly whimpering in her chamber?

  • I left my carriage half a mile below, and have been revelling in the sun and air.

    Robert Elsmere

    Mrs. Humphry Ward

  • And he went in to fight, revelling like a giant in the red lust of killing.

    Bob, Son of Battle

    Alfred Ollivant

  • Alone with Jack I kept on along the steep trail, revelling in my freedom.

    A Wayfarer in China

    Elizabeth Kendall

British Dictionary definitions for revelling


verb -els, -elling or -elled or US -els, -eling or -eled (intr)
  1. (foll by in) to take pleasure or wallowto revel in success
  2. to take part in noisy festivities; make merry
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  1. (often plural) an occasion of noisy merrymaking
  2. a less common word for revelry
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Derived Formsreveller, nounrevelment, noun

Word Origin

C14: from Old French reveler to be merry, noisy, from Latin rebellāre to revolt, rebel
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 revelling



late 14c., "riotous merry-making," from Old French revel "entertainment, revelry," verbal noun from reveler "be disorderly, make merry" (see revel (v.)). Related: Revels; revel-rout.

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early 14c., "to feast in a noisy manner;" late 14c., "take part in revels," from Old French reveler, also rebeller "be disorderly, make merry; rebel, be riotous," from Latin rebellare "to rebel" (see rebel (v.)). The meaning "take great pleasure in" first recorded 1754. Related: Reveled; reveling; revelled; revelling.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper