gambol

verb
gam·​bol | \ˈgam-bəl \
gamboled or gambolled; gamboling or gambolling\ ˈgam-​bə-​liŋ also  -​bliŋ \

Definition of gambol 

(Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to skip about in play : frisk, frolic

gambol

noun

Definition of gambol (Entry 2 of 2)

: a skipping or leaping about in play

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Synonyms for gambol

Synonyms: Verb

caper, cavort, disport, frisk, frolic, lark, rollick, romp, sport

Synonyms: Noun

binge, fling, frisk, frolic, idyll (also idyl), lark, ploy, revel, rollick, romp, spree

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Did You Know?

Verb

In Middle French, the noun "gambade" referred to the frisky spring of a jumping horse. In the early 1500s, the English word gambol romped into print as both a verb and a noun. (The noun means "a skipping or leaping about in play.") The English word is not restricted to horses, but rather can be used of any frolicsome creature. It is a word that suggests levity and spontaneity, and it tends to be used especially of the lively activity of children or animals engaged in active play.

Examples of gambol in a Sentence

Verb

lambs gamboling in the meadow dog owners chat while their pooches gambol on the park's great lawn

Noun

she and her old college roommate headed off for one final European gambol before returning to the States to start their separate careers
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

That southeast corner of routes 22 and 59 saw Light's herd of horses and their foals gamboling in the pastures. Barbara Benson, chicagotribune.com, "Column: Horses continue to make history in Barrington area," 5 July 2018 Thanks to a reintroduction program, this horse is now found on the steppes of Central Asia, and up to 300 horses gambol around in Mongolia. Ralph Steadman, Discover Magazine, "Where the Wild Things Aren't," 1 Mar. 2018 Once the legislature got a look and all the devils that are gamboling through the details of the deal, somebody threw the emergency braking system and the whole legislature screeched to a halt. Charles P. Pierce, Esquire, "Human Bowling Jacket Paul LePage Equates Confederate Statues with 9/11 Monuments," 17 Aug. 2017 Or a surreal snow globe, with dinosaurs and flamingos gamboling next to the Tour Eiffel? Lynn Yaeger, Vogue, "Merci’s Summer Pop-Up Is Your Source for Quirky Paris Keepsakes," 13 July 2017 Each episode — burbling freshets, dancing peasants, water sprites gamboling in moonlit waters, a torrent tumbling over the St. John's Rapids – was firmly drawn and smoothly tied together. John Von Rhein, chicagotribune.com, "Jakub Hrusa scores strong CSO debut with vital account of Czech symphonic cycle," 19 May 2017 Tudor Nights: Derby Bight Sip, snack and savor artifacts and stories of a time when wealthy bettors gamboled and hooves pounded the streets of Washington. Washington Post, "Community and cultural events in the District, May 4-11, 2017," 3 May 2017 But for those in attendance for the launch event that watched as their pets gamboled over greenery seemed undeterred by the idea of a fee. Elizabeth Roberts, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Dog park moves toward paid memberships," 28 Apr. 2017 Now the view from the Leaman home and gardens includes fluffy lambs gamboling about in the open pastures high above Penn Cove. Valerie Easton, The Seattle Times, "Meandering gardens and a flock of sheep are part of the charm at this Whidbey Island farm," 12 Apr. 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Underneath, a river otter gambols on a rocky beach. Lynn Jacobson, The Seattle Times, "Paddle a kayak from Fort Worden for a waterside tour of Port Townsend," 23 Aug. 2017

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

Verb

1508, in the meaning defined above

Noun

circa 1510, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for gambol

Verb

in part verbal derivative of gambol entry 2, in part borrowing (assimilated to the noun) from Middle French gambader, verbal derivative of gambade

Noun

earlier "leap of a horse, leap, caper," probably apocopated variant of gambold, gambald, re-formation (by association with French-derived words, as ribald entry 2, ending in the suffix -aud, -auld) of gambade, borrowed from Middle French, probably borrowed from Occitan cambado, gambado, from camba "leg" (going back to Late Latin camba, gamba) + -ado -ade — more at jamb

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Dictionary Entries near gambol

gambo

gamboge

gambo hemp

gambol

gambrel

gambrel roof

gambs

Statistics for gambol

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Time Traveler for gambol

The first known use of gambol was in 1508

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More Definitions for gambol

gambol

verb

English Language Learners Definition of gambol

: to run or jump in a lively way

gambol

verb
gam·​bol | \ˈgam-bəl \
gamboled or gambolled; gamboling or gambolling

Kids Definition of gambol

: to run or play happily : frolic Children gamboled on the lawn.

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