hi·lar·i·ty | \ hi-ˈler-ə-tē , hī- \

Definition of hilarity 

: boisterous merriment or laughter

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Examples of hilarity in a Sentence

My attempt to carve the turkey was a source of great hilarity at the dinner table. hilarity is the last thing you expect to find at a funeral, but we were there to celebrate his life rather than to dwell on his death

Recent Examples on the Web

Even in mid-career, Lenny would go off on holiday with Burtie and Shirley, the three of them joined in hilarity over childhood memories, complete with an invented nonsense language. David Denby, The New Yorker, "Leonard Bernstein Through His Daughter’s Eyes," 16 June 2018 Somehow, the two of them turn the classroom into a dance floor, and hilarity ensues. Sam Tornow, Billboard, "Eric Bellinger & Ne-Yo Transform Into Dance Instructors in 'Dirty Dancing' Video: Watch," 19 June 2018 Here was a show that so perfectly captured the frustrations and hilarities of single women living, dating and working in New York. New York Times, "True Tales of ‘Sex and the City’," 6 June 2018 The Broadway show has been nominated for 12 Tony awards (including Best Musical), and creator (and Tony-nominee) Tina Fey has brought the hilarity and wit of the film to the Great White Way. Dan Shinaberry, Teen Vogue, "Mean Girls on Broadway Stars Ashley Park and Kate Rockwell's Dressing Room Tour," 2 June 2018 As for Mustafi and Koscielny, the defensive partnership didn't seem to struggle with any faces, though the mixture of Petr Cech and David Seaman rightfully caused a furore of hilarity when revealed. SI.com, "VIDEO: Arsenal's Bellerin & Ozil Take on Mustafi & Koscielny in BT Sport's 'Face-Off' Challenge," 2 May 2018 The musical hilarity continues with the 13th edition of the Phoenix’s annual holiday show, opening Nov. 23. Sarah Bahr, Indianapolis Star, "Steve Martin musical, Edgar Allen Poe highlight new Phoenix Theatre season," 9 July 2018 This past weekend, Cardi had no problem reflecting on the past when a picture from her childhood sparked hilarity on Twitter. Carl Lamarre, Billboard, "Twitter Can't Stop Laughing Over This Priceless Photo of Baby Cardi B," 2 July 2018 As his voice matured, Clemens’s stories, hoaxes, and brutal sketches grew into something entirely American, encapsulating the terrible whimsy, painful irony, and outrageous hilarity of life on the mining frontier. Gregory Crouch, Time, "Mark Twain Claimed He Got His Pen Name From a Riverboat Captain. He May Have Actually Gotten It in a Saloon," 19 June 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined above

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Dictionary Entries near hilarity






Hilary term


Statistics for hilarity

Last Updated

7 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for hilarity

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

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More Definitions for hilarity



English Language Learners Definition of hilarity

: noisy fun or laughter


hi·lar·i·ty | \ hi-ˈler-ə-tē \

Kids Definition of hilarity

: noisy fun or laughter

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Comments on hilarity

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


alleviating pain or harshness

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