spir·​it·​ed | \ˈspir-ə-təd \

Definition of spirited 

: full of energy, animation, or courage a spirited discussion

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Other Words from spirited

spiritedly adverb
spiritedness noun

Did You Know?

You may see spirited used to describe a conversation, a debate, a horse, or a campaign. And it often shows up in such words as high-spirited ("bold and energetic"), mean-spirited ("spiteful"), and public-spirited ("generous to a community"), all of which reflect the original meaning of spirit, a notion much like "soul" or "personality".

Examples of spirited in a Sentence

The team put up a spirited defense. She's a very spirited young lady.

Recent Examples on the Web

The song features a spirited pedal steel guitar solo from none other than Captain Trips himself — Jerry Garcia. Jordan Runtagh, PEOPLE.com, "Graham Nash Tells the Wild Tales Behind His Most Enduring Songs," 29 June 2018 She was inspired to continue Wizards Weekend this year after meeting other wizards, muggles and other spirited people at the event, who requested some changes. Sheryl Devore, Lake County News-Sun, "Wizards event conjures up new grand banquet, continues kids magic school," 7 June 2018 The holiday season is fast approaching, which means it's once again time for the world to come together in a spirited embrace of consumerism. Jeff Dunn, Ars Technica, "The Ars Holiday Gift Guide 2018—tech and gear for travel that we’d buy," 13 Nov. 2018 Leo is represented by the lion, and these spirited fire signs are the kings and queens of the celestial jungle. Aliza Kelly Faragher, Allure, "Each Zodiac Sign's Unique Personality Traits, Explained by an Astrologer," 28 Oct. 2018 Their argument brought together Rondo and Paul for a spirited conversation. Ben Cohen, WSJ, "LeBron James’s First Game in Los Angeles Turns Into Fight Night," 21 Oct. 2018 Nothing happened beyond that spirited argument, and the bad feelings were gone when Machado singled in the 13th inning. Greg Beacham, The Seattle Times, "Benches clear after Machado clips Aguilar’s leg in NLCS," 16 Oct. 2018 So maybe — hopefully — missing the tournament has forced a necessary level of introspection and evaluation that wouldn’t have occurred if the U.S. had made its usual spirited but limited appearance. Rich Campbell, chicagotribune.com, "Missing World Cup can't be in vain for U.S. men's national team," 13 July 2018 But the spirited attorney is also battling Trump on policy. Dianna M. Náñez, azcentral, "Avenatti to Trump: Stay off the golf course, start reuniting migrant children and parents," 6 July 2018

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

1599, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for spirited

Last Updated

12 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for spirited

The first known use of spirited was in 1599

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More Definitions for spirited



English Language Learners Definition of spirited

: full of courage or energy : very lively or determined


spir·​it·​ed | \ˈspir-ə-təd \

Kids Definition of spirited

: full of courage or energy a spirited horse a spirited debate

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More from Merriam-Webster on spirited

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for spirited

Spanish Central: Translation of spirited

Nglish: Translation of spirited for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of spirited for Arabic Speakers

Comments on spirited

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


the figure or shape of a crescent moon

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