What It Means
Jovial means "markedly good-humored" and describes people and things that are cheerful or full of joy.
// Andy remembered his Uncle Jim as a jovial man with a ready smile, a firm handshake, and a cheery greeting for all.
// Family reunions are a jovial occasion in which long-distance relatives reconnect and, of course, share amusing stories about each other.
"Still, part of the pleasure of dining at Margie's is ... its familial atmosphere. When Winston, a jovial seventeen-year-old senior at Far Rockaway High School, stopped to chat while clearing dishes, it was hard not to feel like a guest at an intergenerational dinner." — Jiayang Fan, The New Yorker, 16 Aug. 2021
Did You Know?
In Roman astrology, planets were named after gods, and people were thought to share the personality traits of the god whose planet was rising when they were born. Jupiter, also called Jove, was the chief Roman god and was considered a majestic type who was the source of joy and happiness. The Latin adjective jovialis means "of or relating to Jove." In French, this had become jovial, which English borrowed and used to describe people and things full of cheer or joy.
Test Your Vocabulary with M-W Quizzes
What is the name of the Roman god of commerce, travel, and theft? [Hint: It is also the name of the chemical element with the nickname quicksilver.]VIEW THE ANSWER
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