lively

adjective
live·​ly | \ ˈlīv-lē How to pronounce lively (audio) \
livelier; liveliest

Definition of lively

1 : briskly alert and energetic : vigorous, animated a lively discussion lively children racing for home
2 : active, intense takes a lively interest in politics
3 : full of life, movement, or incident lively streets at carnival time
4 : brilliant, fresh a lively wit
5 : imparting spirit or vivacity : stimulating many a peer of England brews livelier liquor than the Muse— A. E. Housman
6 : quick to rebound : resilient a lively ball
7 : responding readily to the helm a lively boat
8 obsolete : living

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Other Words from lively

livelily \ ˈlīv-​lə-​lē How to pronounce lively (audio) \ adverb
liveliness \ ˈlīv-​lē-​nəs How to pronounce lively (audio) \ noun
lively adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for lively

lively, animated, vivacious, sprightly, gay mean keenly alive and spirited. lively suggests briskness, alertness, or energy. a lively debate on the issues animated applies to what is spirited and active. an animated discussion of current events vivacious suggests an activeness of gesture and wit, often playful or alluring. a vivacious party host sprightly suggests lightness and spirited vigor of manner or wit. a tuneful, sprightly musical gay stresses complete freedom from care and overflowing spirits. the gay spirit of Paris in the 1920s

Examples of lively in a Sentence

a very lively writing style The book is lively and well written. They had a lively debate. A lively atmosphere keeps people coming back to the café.
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Recent Examples on the Web In addition to stories about artists, Palmer also makes room for lively roundtable discussions and even academic experts to provide some crucial context and empirical data. Jon Freeman, Rolling Stone, 15 June 2021 Try it in an olive oil cake to highlight the lively green flavors. Heather Eddy, Bon Appétit, 15 June 2021 This lively restaurant and bar offers guests something that isn’t all too common in the city—a rooftop bar! Chelsea Davis, Forbes, 14 June 2021 In keeping with the Pride flag’s color scheme, the products feature lively hues. Marc Bona, cleveland, 11 June 2021 Maintain a lively simmer, and cook until the mixture reduces and turns a golden brown, stirring every 2 to 5 minutes to prevent scorching on the sides and bottom, about 1 hour. San Diego Union-Tribune, 9 June 2021 The console and rattan tray behind the desk provide extra storage, and a rattan mirror from Serena & Lily adds a touch of lively warmth. Kelly Allen, House Beautiful, 8 June 2021 The vibe in the rooms and common spaces is very retro-chic, and the hotel has an outdoor pool and lively pool deck. Travel + Leisure, 1 Mar. 2021 At a recent screening, the audience was filled with gamers, who kept a lively chat going as the letters, scenes from the play, and interactive moments unfolded. BostonGlobe.com, 3 June 2021

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 8

History and Etymology for lively

Middle English, from Old English līflīc, from līf life

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Time Traveler for lively

Time Traveler

The first known use of lively was before the 12th century

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Statistics for lively

Last Updated

17 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Lively.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lively. Accessed 22 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for lively

lively

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of lively

: very active and energetic
: full of energy, excitement, or feeling
: full of movement or activity

lively

adjective
live·​ly | \ ˈlīv-lē How to pronounce lively (audio) \
livelier; liveliest

Kids Definition of lively

1 : full of life : active a lively puppy
2 : showing or resulting from active thought a lively imagination
3 : full of spirit or feeling : animated lively music

Other Words from lively

liveliness noun

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