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[rev-uh l] /ˈrɛv əl/
verb (used without object), reveled, reveling or (especially British) revelled, revelling.
to take great pleasure or delight (usually followed by in):
to revel in luxury.
to make merry; indulge in boisterous festivities.
boisterous merrymaking or festivity; revelry.
Often, revels. an occasion of merrymaking or noisy festivity with dancing, masking, etc.
Origin of revel
1275-1325; (v.) Middle English revelen < Old French reveler to raise tumult, make merry < Latin rebellāre to rebel; (noun) Middle English < Old French, derivative of reveler
Related forms
reveler; especially British, reveller, noun
revelment, noun
unreveling, adjective
unrevelling, adjective
2. celebrate, carouse, roister, caper. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for revelling
Historical Examples
  • He had a grand time, revelling with pen and pad and littering the floor with inked sheets unnumbered and still wet.

    When Winter Comes to Main Street Grant Martin Overton
  • She is trifling with me, and very likely she is now revelling in her triumph.

    The Memoires of Casanova, Complete Jacques Casanova de Seingalt
  • Sir Hero is revelling in the wars, or in Armida's bowers; Mr. Poet has spied a wrinkle; the brush is for the rose in its season.

  • What rivers, how sunshiny and revelling, are the Brembo and the Serio!

    Imaginary Conversations and Poems Walter Savage Landor
  • I will not allege, as perhaps I might, the example of my companions, then revelling in all the pleasures of the day.

    Confessions Of Con Cregan Charles James Lever
  • She had some glorious moments, revelling in the joy of creation.

    The Beth Book Sarah Grand
  • There he lay in the deepest black, gigantic, revelling in his horrid debauch—the Black Killer!

    Bob, Son of Battle Alfred Ollivant
  • How had the happiness in which she fancied she saw him revelling been constituted?

  • I actually wanted the necessaries of life, while he was revelling in superfluous luxury.

    Cat and Dog Julia Charlotte Maitland
  • That is to say, I am to starve while you are revelling here!

    The Honor of the Name Emile Gaboriau
British Dictionary definitions for revelling


verb (intransitive) -els, -elling, -elled (US) -els, -eling, -eled
(foll by in) to take pleasure or wallow: to revel in success
to take part in noisy festivities; make merry
(often pl) an occasion of noisy merrymaking
a less common word for revelry
Derived Forms
reveller, noun
revelment, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Old French reveler to be merry, noisy, from Latin rebellāre to revolt, rebel
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 revelling



late 14c., "riotous merry-making," from Old French revel "entertainment, revelry," verbal noun from reveler "be disorderly, make merry" (see revel (v.)). Related: Revels; revel-rout.


early 14c., "to feast in a noisy manner;" late 14c., "take part in revels," from Old French reveler, also rebeller "be disorderly, make merry; rebel, be riotous," from Latin rebellare "to rebel" (see rebel (v.)). The meaning "take great pleasure in" first recorded 1754. Related: Reveled; reveling; revelled; revelling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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