fri·​vol·​i·​ty | \ fri-ˈvä-lə-tē How to pronounce frivolity (audio) \
plural frivolities

Definition of frivolity

1 : the quality or state of being frivolous He has no patience for frivolity.
2 : a frivolous act or thing He spends money on the latest fashions and other frivolities.

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of frivolity in a Sentence

He has no patience for frivolity. He spends money on the latest fashions and other frivolities.

Recent Examples on the Web

That's the delight—and wit—of Katleman's work, which falls somewhere between critique of and paean to frivolity, and hangs on the walls of Dior's Hong Kong flagship. Amanda Alagem, Harper's BAZAAR, "Fall Jewels: Off the Walls," 10 Sep. 2015 Many of us live above our means, spend money on nonessentials and frivolities, and fail to give to serious causes, organizations, and educational institutions that so desperately need funds. Coleman Hughes, WSJ, "Martin Luther King, Colorblind Radical," 17 Jan. 2019 Emily Giffin's delight in life's frivolities has never stopped her from taking on difficult issues. Bethanne Patrick,, "Emily Giffin's new novel is all her fans ever wanted," 29 June 2018 Timi Olotu, a 30-year-old growth marketer from London, has also found a divide on frivolity in the U.K., where the organization was founded. Ira Iosebashvili, WSJ, "Mensa’s Debate: Deep Thinking or Games and Drinking?," 1 Jan. 2019 The thoughtful, careful approach to both work and life means less frivolity, more authenticity, and most importantly, happiness that isn’t related to the amount of money in my bank account. Rachel Jacoby Zoldan, SELF, "The 8 Best Lessons I Learned Living the Lagom Life," 31 Oct. 2018 July 4th safety tips Fourth of July is a time marked by family bonding and frivolity, and usually a firework or two. Gabe Hauari, The Courier-Journal, "Can I shoot fireworks in Louisville? Your July 4 questions answered," 28 June 2018 Despite all the frivolity afoot, there was definitely an undercurrent of something darker and more sinister too. Adam Tschorn,, "It's haute harlequins and ringmaster chic at Moschino's circus-themed Burbank runway show," 13 June 2018 The frivolity of the claim is evidenced by the Chief Justice's decision to reject the Secret Service's request for a stay without even referring the matter to the full Court. Aaron Blake, Washington Post, "Brett Kavanaugh, Trump and what the Starr Report says about impeachment, annotated," 11 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'frivolity.' 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 frivolity

1764, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for frivolity

see frivolous

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about frivolity

Statistics for frivolity

Last Updated

4 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for frivolity

The first known use of frivolity was in 1764

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for frivolity



English Language Learners Definition of frivolity

: a lack of seriousness : the quality or state of being silly or frivolous
: something that is unnecessary or silly


fri·​vol·​i·​ty | \ fri-ˈvä-lə-tē How to pronounce frivolity (audio) \
plural frivolities

Kids Definition of frivolity

: a lack of seriousness He treats school with frivolity.

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on frivolity

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


to mark by some ceremony or observation

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Vocabulary Quiz Returns!

  • stylized drawing of woman pole vaulting across gap to get trophy
  • Which is a synonym of fuliginous?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Word Winder's CrossWinder

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!