Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
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See also: Jëst and jesť


Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English geste (idle tale), from Old French geste (acts, exploits), from Latin gesta (acts, deeds). Compare gest, gesture.


  • enPR: jĕst, IPA(key): /dʒɛst/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɛst


jest (plural jests)

  1. (archaic) An act performed for amusement; a joke.
    • Sheridan
      The Right Honourable gentleman is indebted to his memory for his jests, and to his imagination for his facts.
  2. (archaic) Someone or something that is ridiculed; the target of a joke.
    Your majesty, stop him before he makes you the jest of the court.
    • Shakespeare
      Then let me be your jest; I deserve it.
  3. (obsolete) A deed; an action; a gest.
    • Sir T. Elyot
      the jests or actions of princes
  4. (obsolete) A mask; a pageant; an interlude.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Nares to this entry?)
    • Kyd
      He promised us, in honour of our guest, / To grace our banquet with some pompous jest.


jest (third-person singular simple present jests, present participle jesting, simple past and past participle jested)

  1. To tell a joke; to talk in a playful manner; to make fun of something or someone.
    Surely you jest!
Derived terms[edit]
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.

See also[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

Eye dialect spelling of just. This spelling is used for both AAVE and Southern US English.


jest (not comparable)

  1. (African American Vernacular, Southern US) Alternative spelling of just






  1. third-person singular present indicative of być; is
    Ona jest ładna.She's pretty.
    Agnieszka jest studentką.Agnieszka is a student.
  2. (mathematics) is, equals (see also wynosi)
    dwa plus dwa jest cztery.Two plus two is four.