ebul·​lient | \i-ˈbu̇l-yənt, -ˈbəl-\

Definition of ebullient 

2 : characterized by ebullience : having or showing liveliness and enthusiasm ebullient performers

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from ebullient

ebulliently adverb

Did You Know?

Someone who is ebullient is bubbling over with enthusiasm, so it shouldn't be much of a surprise that the adjective ebullient derives from the Latin verb ebullire, which means "to bubble out." (The stem bullire is an ancestor of our word boil and derives from bulla, the Latin word for "bubble.") In its earliest known uses in English in the late 1500s, ebullient was used in the sense of "boiling" or "bubbling" that might have described a pot simmering on the stove. Only later did the word's meaning broaden to encompass emotional agitation (particularly of the exuberant kind) in addition to the tempestuous roiling of a boiling liquid.

Examples of ebullient in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

First the young pit crew then the engineers and executives began hugging each other, chanting and jumping up and down like ebullient soccer fans. Dan Neil, WSJ, "Volkswagen’s All-Electric Effort to Climb Out of Its P.R. Hole," 4 July 2018 Before either of these experiences, my acquaintanceship with eggplant was limited to tiny cans of Progresso caponata, whose ebullient, colorful exterior hinted at the flavor within. Evan Kleiman, latimes.com, "Cucina Italiana: The joy of eggplant. Try making a timbale," 5 July 2018 Episodes lyrical, ebullient, searching and even wacky ensue as the forces merge, separate and regroup. John Von Rhein, chicagotribune.com, "MusicNOW's resident composers wrap up their tenure with well-received parting gifts," 22 May 2018 This second part in the playwright's Aran Islands trilogy — sandwiched between The Cripple of Inishmaan and The Banshees of Inisheer — is a brutally ebullient farce that gleefully features several gory onstage murders. Leslie Felperin, The Hollywood Reporter, "'The Lieutenant of Inishmore': Theater Review," 5 July 2018 Singer and songwriter Whitney Rose may have been born and raised on Prince Edward Island in Canada, but her ebullient music suggests she’s easily settled into the rich scene of her adopted home of Austin, Texas. Peter Margasak, Chicago Reader, "Whitney Rose enfolds bits of Tex-Mex and 60s pop into her lush, retro-tinged sound," 5 July 2018 The celebrations in the streets enacted that sense of possibility, with all the groups mixing together in an ebullient embrace, the French flag speaking the stories of players such as Zidane and Thuram as the true story of the country. Laurent Dubois, The Atlantic, "France’s Ghosts Return for the World Cup," 14 July 2018 Musk wrote in an ebullient note to employees in response to increasing production. Lucinda Shen, Fortune, "As Tesla Reaches Model 3 Production Targets, Short Sellers Have Lost $2.5 Billion," 2 July 2018 His ebullient Schützenstrasse Quarter complex, built on the site of the former death strip, completely overwrites the area’s deadly history. Carolina A. Miranda, latimes.com, "What the dismantling of the Berlin Wall can teach us as Trump tries to build his wall," 21 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ebullient.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of ebullient

1599, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for ebullient

Latin ebullient-, ebulliens, present participle of ebullire to bubble out, from e- + bullire to bubble, boil — more at boil

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about ebullient

Listen to Our Podcast about ebullient

Statistics for ebullient

Last Updated

28 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for ebullient

The first known use of ebullient was in 1599

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for ebullient



English Language Learners Definition of ebullient

: lively and enthusiastic

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on ebullient

Spanish Central: Translation of ebullient

Nglish: Translation of ebullient for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ebullient for Arabic Speakers

Comments on ebullient

What made you want to look up ebullient? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


obstinately defiant of authority

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Autumn Words of the Day 2018

  • a-top-down-image-of-road-through-an-autumn-forest
  • Which is a synonym of fugacious?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!