festive

festive
festal, festive
Both words are derived from the Latin words festum meaning ‘feast’ and festus meaning ‘joyful’, and mean ‘in the nature of a feast or festival’. Festive is much the more common, and is the one generally chosen when the meaning is ‘cheerful, joyous, celebratory’:

• A room can look festive and jolly without being overwhelmed by lots of gaudy decorations —Ideal Home, 1991.

Festal lies somewhat closer to its etymological connection with festivals:

• It was eaten with a spoon and served on festal days as part of the main course —Good Food, 1992.

The festive season is a way of describing Christmas, and festive also occurs with words such as air, atmosphere, mood, and occasion.

Modern English usage. 2014.

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Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Festive — Fes tive, a. [L. festivus, fr. festum holiday, feast. See {feast}, and cf. {Festivous}.] Pertaining to, or becoming, a feast; festal; joyous; gay; mirthful; sportive. {Fes tive*ly}, adv. [1913 Webster] The glad circle round them yield their souls …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • festive — (adj.) 1650s, pertaining to a feast, from L. festivus festive, joyous, gay, from festum festival, holiday, noun use of neuter of adjective festus (see FEAST (Cf. feast) (n.)). Meaning mirthful is attested by 1774. Unattested from 1651 to 1735;… …   Etymology dictionary

  • festive — [adj] decorated, celebratory blithe, bouncy, carnival, cheery, chipper*, chirpy, convivial, festal, gala, gay, gleeful, go go*, grooving, happy, hearty, holiday, jocund, jolly, jovial, joyful, joyous, jubilant, juiced up*, jumping, lighthearted,… …   New thesaurus

  • festive — ► ADJECTIVE 1) relating to a festival. 2) jovially celebratory. DERIVATIVES festively adverb festiveness noun …   English terms dictionary

  • festive — [fes′tiv] adj. [L festivus < festum: see FEAST] 1. of, for, or suited to a feast or festival 2. merry; joyous festively adv. festiveness n …   English World dictionary

  • festive — fes|tive [ˈfestıv] adj [Date: 1600 1700; : Latin; Origin: festivus, from festum ceremony of celebration ] 1.) looking or feeling bright and cheerful in a way that seems suitable for celebrating something ▪ The atmosphere was festive and jolly. ▪… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • festive — [[t]fe̱stɪv[/t]] 1) ADJ GRADED: usu ADJ n Something that is festive is special, colourful, or exciting, especially because of a holiday or celebration. The town has a festive holiday atmosphere... The Captain s Party on Saturday evening is the… …   English dictionary

  • festive — fes|tive [ festıv ] adjective bright and colorful in a way that makes you think of a celebration: The decorations gave the room a festive air. a. connected with a festival or celebration, especially Christmas: Ray was full of the festive spirit.… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • festive — adjective 1 looking or feeling bright and cheerful in a way that seems suitable for celebrating something: There was a festive atmosphere in the city. | John was obviously in a festive mood. 2 festive occasion a day when you celebrate something… …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • festive — UK [ˈfestɪv] / US adjective a) bright and colourful in a way that makes you think of a celebration The decorations gave the room a festive air. b) connected with a festival or celebration, especially Christmas Ray was full of the festive spirit.… …   English dictionary

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