fri·​vol·​i·​ty | \fri-ˈvä-lə-tē \
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.

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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

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 If the Yankees arrived here in a sour mood after being swept at Tampa Bay over the weekend — their only three-game losing streak of the season — then the feeling has shifted to frivolity the last couple of nights. New York Times, "The Yankees Find Reasons to Smile, Even Beyond Getting a Win," 26 June 2018 Or voting yes and facing the wrath of voters, who will want to know why there's money for such frivolities and not for special education or janitors to clean our filthy schools. Ben Joravsky, Chicago Reader, "Politics / Transportation Another whopper from Rahm: express service to O'Hare that won’t cost the public," 18 June 2018 Thrust into the limelight, Singaporeans have responded with a mix of pride, frivolity and entrepreneurial spirit. Chun Han Wong, WSJ, "I’ll Have Atomic Wings! For Singapore Foodies, Trump-Kim Fusion Is the Bomb," 10 June 2018 Meanwhile, the electronic backing jolts his existential character across two poles, between frivolity and responsibility. Morgan Enos, Billboard, "The 1975 Make an Electrified Return With 'Give Yourself a Try': Listen," 31 May 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.

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First Known Use of frivolity

1764, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for frivolity

see frivolous

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Statistics for frivolity

Last Updated

14 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for frivolity

The first known use of frivolity was in 1764

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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 \
plural frivolities

Kids Definition of frivolity

: a lack of seriousness He treats school with frivolity.

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Comments on frivolity

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