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lively

[lahyv-lee] /ˈlaɪv li/
adjective, livelier, liveliest.
1.
full or suggestive of life or vital energy; active, vigorous, or brisk:
a lively discussion.
2.
animated, spirited, vivacious, or sprightly:
a lively tune; a lively wit.
3.
eventful, stirring, or exciting:
The opposition gave us a lively time.
4.
bustling with activity; astir:
The marketplace was lively with vendors.
5.
strong, keen, or distinct; vivid:
a lively recollection.
6.
striking, telling, or effective, as an expression or instance.
7.
vivid or bright, as color or light:
a lively pink.
8.
sparkling, as wines.
9.
fresh or invigorating, as air:
a lively breeze.
10.
rebounding quickly; springing back; resilient:
a lively tennis ball.
11.
riding the sea buoyantly, as a ship.
adverb
12.
with briskness, vigor, or animation; briskly:
to step lively.
Origin of lively
1000
before 1000; Middle English; Old English līflīc vital. See life, -ly
Related forms
livelily, adverb
liveliness, noun
overliveliness, noun
overlively, adjective
unliveliness, noun
unlively, adjective, adverb
Synonyms
1. alert, spry, nimble, agile, quick, pert. 2. gay, buoyant. 5. forceful, clear. 7. brilliant, clear, glowing.
Antonyms
1. inactive, torpid. 2. dull. 5. weak. 7. dim.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for lively
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Aye, so it has, agreed Mrs. Parry Wynn, intelligent an—an—lively.

    Through Welsh Doorways Jeannette Augustus Marks
  • At last this lively maiden got Philip away from the rest, and began to cross-question him.

    Malbone Thomas Wentworth Higginson
  • How lively and agreeable she is—how much she has the air of a woman of fashion and of the world.

    Emmeline Charlotte Turner Smith
  • The lively wretch has made me a visit, and is but just gone away.

    Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9) Samuel Richardson
  • It was a lively air and the professor rendered it ably but quite softly.

    Bunker Bean Harry Leon Wilson
British Dictionary definitions for lively

lively

/ˈlaɪvlɪ/
adjective -lier, -liest
1.
full of life or vigour
2.
vivacious or animated, esp when in company
3.
busy; eventful
4.
characterized by mental or emotional intensity; vivid
5.
having a striking effect on the mind or senses
6.
refreshing: a lively breeze
7.
springy or bouncy or encouraging springiness: a lively ball
8.
(of a boat or ship) readily responsive to the helm
adverb
9.
in a brisk manner: step lively
10.
(interjection) look lively, make haste
Derived Forms
liveliness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for lively
adj.

Old English liflic "living, existing," literally "life-like;" from life + -ly (2). Sense of "active, energetic" developed by early 13c., from notion "full of life."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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