View synonyms for riotous


[ rahy-uh-tuhs ]


  1. (of an act) characterized by or of the nature of rioting or a disturbance of the peace.
  2. (of a person) inciting or taking part in a riot.
  3. given to or marked by unrestrained revelry; loose; wanton:

    riotous living.

  4. boisterous or uproarious:

    riotous laughter.

  5. hilariously funny.


/ ˈraɪətəs /


  1. proceeding from or of the nature of riots or rioting
  2. inciting to riot
  3. characterized by wanton or lascivious revelry

    riotous living

  4. characterized by boisterous or unrestrained merriment

    riotous laughter

“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

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Derived Forms

  • ˈriotousness, noun
  • ˈriotously, adverb
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Other Words From

  • riot·ous·ly adverb
  • riot·ous·ness noun
  • un·riot·ous adjective
  • un·riot·ous·ly adverb
  • un·riot·ous·ness noun
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Word History and Origins

Origin of riotous1

Middle English word dating back to 1300–50; riot, -ous
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Example Sentences

Early on, we see Six prowling through a riotous party in Bangkok, dressed in a slinky red suit.

From Time

When the phrase “I have kids” pierced their riotous fever and awakened them to the dad and neighbor kneeling before them.

From Time

Unlike just about any cop character you’ll see on American TV, the detectives all have witty, bone-dry senses of humor that make scenes that have them puzzling out the case together absolutely riotous.

From Time

Minutes into the film, a wide-eyed Buddy is confronted with a riotous, swarming masked mob brandishing torches and homemade weapons, screaming chants of “Catholics Out!”

From Time

Before resigning, though, Sund attempted to justify his department’s failure, saying that while the USCP had “a robust plan” to deal with a planned demonstration, the day’s turn to “criminal riotous behavior” was unexpected.

From Fortune

When they grew riotous again, Putin claimed, he himself stepped outside.

His new memoir examines Joplin, demons, riotous—and romantic—antics, and all.

Women worked on their front yards full of the riotous colors of wildflowers.

She reveals the absurdity of notions that “the Muslim world” is a riotous, violent mess, and that “they” hate “us” for being free.

Staging riotous town meetings to protest the Affordable Care Act.

He contrived, it was said, to be at once as rich as Croesus and as riotous as Mark Antony.

The balcony overlooked an inner court, and was hung with riotous moon-vines.

Under the title of ‘Covent Garden Weeded,’ it exposes the riotous doings that prevailed in that joyous locality.

These were days when the trumpets blew and the flags fluttered, days of riotous health and the joy of life.

He had spent the night among the riotous spirits in the guard-house, and had evidently undergone much wear and tear.





riot gunriotous living