hap·​pi·​ness | \ ˈha-pē-nəs How to pronounce happiness (audio) \

Definition of happiness

1a : a state of well-being and contentment : joy
b : a pleasurable or satisfying experience I wish you every happiness in life. I had the happiness of seeing you— W. S. Gilbert
2 : felicity, aptness a striking happiness of expression
3 obsolete : good fortune : prosperity all happiness bechance to thee— William Shakespeare

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of happiness in a Sentence

They made a toast to long life and happiness. her happiness was complete when she got her very own house
Recent Examples on the Web Beth is a highly successful career woman; Liz falls for a soldier named Josh and finds more happiness in her personal life. Matthew J. Palm, orlandosentinel.com, "‘If/Then’ intriguingly follows the road(s) less traveled at Theater West End | Review," 16 Aug. 2019 That country has increased efforts in recent years, including naming a minister of state for happiness, with some success. The Christian Science Monitor, "Generation gap in the presidential race?," 1 Aug. 2019 An oversized bath tub of happiness for another year of you. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Emilia Clarke and Jason Momoa's Game of Thrones Reunion Will Melt Your Heart," 28 July 2019 After almost two decades together, Mariska and Peter have found that laughter is the key to happiness in their relationship. Kelly O'sullivan, Country Living, "Mariska Hargitay Knew Husband Peter Hermann Was 'The One' on Their First Date," 22 June 2019 Spending mindful, intentional time around trees—what the Japanese call shinrin-yoku, or forest bathing—can promote health and happiness. Kevin Johnson, National Geographic, "19 iconic trees around the world," 21 June 2019 In fact, the actress has found happiness in the most unlikely place. Stephanie Nolasco, Fox News, "'Carrie' star Sissy Spacek reveals life on a Virginia farm: 'That's what gave me stability'," 21 Aug. 2018 Look at your options, and make a positive step toward personal changes that promote happiness, security and peace of mind. Eugenia Last, The Mercury News, "Horoscopes: Sept. 15, 2019," 15 Sep. 2019 There are moments of fleeting happiness, even in a warzone. J.w., The Economist, "“For Sama” is a love letter to Aleppo and its people," 12 Sep. 2019

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for happiness

see happy

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about happiness

Statistics for happiness

Last Updated

4 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for happiness

The first known use of happiness was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for happiness


How to pronounce happiness (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of happiness

: the state of being happy
somewhat formal : an experience that makes you happy

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on happiness

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


not being in agreement or harmony

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Confusing Words—A Quiz

  • alice with tweedle dee and tweedle dum
  • I invented a brand new toaster robot and ______ it "Sir Toasts-a-Lot."
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Add Diction

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!