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[ME. a. OF. joie, joye joy, jewel, F. joie (= Pr. joia, Sp. joya, Pg. joia jewel, It. gioja joy, jewel):pop.L. *gaudia fem. for L. gaudia, pl. of gaudium joy; cf. Pr. joi:L. gaudium.]

  • 1. a. A vivid emotion of pleasure arising from a sense of well-being or satisfaction; the feeling or state of being highly pleased or delighted; exultation of spirit; gladness, delight.
b. with a and pl.: an instance or kind of this.
c. The expression of glad feeling; outward rejoicing; mirth; jubilant festivity.
d. maiden of joy, a courtesan (F. fille de joie). Obs.
e. ellipt. An expression of sympathetic joy, a congratulation. Cf. phr. to give one (the) joy. Obs.
f. Used interjectionally, as an expression of joy.
g. colloq. Result, satisfaction, success. Esp. with negative, and freq. ironical.

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  • 2. A pleasurable state or condition; a state of happiness or felicity; esp. the perfect bliss or beatitude of heaven; hence, the place of bliss, paradise, heaven; = BLISS 2c, GLORY 7. Obs. or arch.
  • 3. a. A source or object of joy; that which causes joy, or in which delight is taken; a delight.
b. Used (esp. dial.) as a term of endearment for a sweetheart, child, etc.; a darling: cf. JO 2.
  • 4. The quality which causes joy; quality or faculty of delighting; = DELIGHT n. 3. Obs. rare.
  • 5. Joyful adoring praise and thanksgiving; = GLORY 4. Rendering L. glria (Gr. ), esp. in the doxologies. Obs.
  • 6. a. A jewel. (F. joie, Godef.) Obs.
b. In E. Indian use from Pg. joia. Obs.


The pursuit of happiness is an experience of joy and satisfaction.[1]