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

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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 Its source of happiness: two double-A batteries and a Harry Potter whistle. Omar Sanchez, EW.com, "Watch out, Baby Yoda — Solar Opposites has its own adorable (but sinister) alien," 27 May 2020 Fulfilling your responsibilities leads to happiness today. BostonGlobe.com, "Horoscope," 12 May 2020 My idea of happiness is a long table of loud friends filling my dining room with laughter. Hadley Keller, House Beautiful, "How Home Projects Have Helped Me Learn to Love Being Alone," 7 May 2020 Once the trial has ended, the annual rate is $69.99, a small price for happiness. Ryan Kost, SFChronicle.com, "The (over) promise of the mindfulness revolution," 7 Feb. 2020 These drugs have long been prized, both in clinical and recreational contexts, for their ability to stimulate a sense of openness, happiness, and universal fellow-feeling. John Semley, The New Republic, "Turn On, Tune In, Cash In," 27 Apr. 2020 Researchers have found that individuals who report feeling and expressing gratitude more report a greater level of positive emotions such as happiness, optimism and joy. David Cregg, The Conversation, "Express gratitude – not because you will benefit from it, but others might," 2 Apr. 2020 Pick up a course on philosophy and superheroes, happiness, or something else — countless courses are currently free to take online. USA Today, "Coronavirus anxiety has upended our lives, but take a moment to breathe," 1 Apr. 2020 What a victory, what triumph, what happiness to be alive, sang the letters in a chorus. Elizabeth Hardwick, The New York Review of Books, "‘Pale Horse, Pale Rider’: A Story of the 1918 Flu Pandemic," 21 Mar. 2020

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.

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First Known Use of happiness

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for happiness

see happy

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Time Traveler for happiness

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for happiness

Last Updated

2 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Happiness.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/happiness. Accessed 5 Jun. 2020.

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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

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