1 [glee]
open delight or pleasure; exultant joy; exultation.
an unaccompanied part song for three or more voices, popular especially in the 18th century.

before 900; Middle English; Old English glēo; cognate with Old Norse glȳ; akin to glow

1. merriment, jollity, hilarity, mirth, joviality, gaiety. See mirth. Unabridged


2 [glee] Scot. and North England.
verb (used without object)
to squint or look with one eye.
a squint.
an imperfect eye, especially one with a cast.

1250–1300; Middle English glien, gleen; perhaps < Scandinavian; compare Old Norse gljā to shine Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
glee (ɡliː)
1.  great merriment or delight, often caused by someone else's misfortune
2.  Compare madrigal a type of song originating in 18th-century England, sung by three or more unaccompanied voices
[Old English gléo; related to Old Norse glӯ]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

O.E. gliu "entertainment, mirth, jest," presumably from a P.Gmc. *gliujan but absent in other Gmc. languages except for the rare O.N. gly. In O.E., an entertainer was a gleuman. A poetic word in M.E., obsolete c.1500-c.1700, it somehow found its way back to currency late 18c. Glee club (1814) is from
the secondary O.E. sense of "unaccompanied part-song," as a form of musical entertainment.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Britannica


(from Old English gleo: "music" or "entertainment," used in this sense in Beowulf), vocal composition for three or more unaccompanied solo male voices, including a countertenor. It consists of several short sections of contrasting character or mood, each ending in a full close, or cadence, and its text is often concerned with eating and drinking. In style it is homophonic-i.e., based on chords rather than on interwoven melodies. Although the first composer to use the term for a musical work was John Playford (1652), the glee flourished from about 1740 to about 1830. By the late 18th century, glees were also composed for mixed voices (male and female). The term is also loosely applied to various vocal compositions of the 17th-19th centuries that do not conform to these characteristics-e.g., the instrumentally accompanied part-songs by Henry Bishop

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
He's wearing a rather smug smile although there's no glee or pride in it.
However, the team can barely contain its glee over pictures of two other stars.
And there seems almost to be glee in the way people spread it.
And both have recently experienced technical milestones that made researchers
  squeal with glee.
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