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Alternative forms[edit]


From Middle English rejoicen, rejoisen, from Old French resjoir. Compare also English rejoy.


  • IPA(key): /ɹɪˈd͡ʒɔɪs/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɔɪs


rejoice (third-person singular simple present rejoices, present participle rejoicing, simple past and past participle rejoiced)

  1. (intransitive) To be very happy, be delighted, exult; to feel joy. [from 14th c.]
    • 1748, David Hume, Enquiries concerning the human understanding and concerning the principles of moral, Oxford University Press, 1973, §6:
      Obscurity, indeed, is painful to the mind as well as to the eye ; but to bring light from obscurity, by whatever labour, must needs to be delightful and rejoicing.
    • 2021 May 15, Phil McNulty, “Chelsea 0-1 Leicester”, in BBC Sport[1]:
      Leicester closed out the win to spark emotional scenes as those inside Wembley rejoiced in a landmark victory.
  2. (obsolete, transitive) To have (someone) as a lover or spouse; to enjoy sexually. [15th–16th c.]
    • 1485, Sir Thomas Malory, chapter X, in Le Morte Darthur, book VI:
      ye that are a knyghte wyueles that ye wyl not loue some mayden or gentylwoman / [] / but hit is noysed that ye loue quene Gueneuer / and that she hath ordeyned by enchauntement that ye shal neuer loue none other / but her / ne none other damoysel ne lady shall reioyse you
      (please add an English translation of this quote)
  3. (transitive) To make happy, exhilarate. [from 15th c.]
    • 1727, John Arbuthnot, Tables of Ancient Coins, Weights and Measures. Explain'd and exemplify'd in several dissertations:
      Were he [Cain] alive, it would rejoice his soul to see what mischief it had made.
    • 1982, Lawrence Durrell, Constance, Faber & Faber, 2004 (Avignon Quintet), p.790-1:
      But good news awaited them in the form of permission to travel about the area replenishing medical stocks in hospitals and clinics, and this task was delegated to Constance, as the newcomer, a fact which rejoiced her.
  4. (obsolete) To enjoy.
    • c. 1449–1455, Reginald Peacock, Represser of over-much weeting [blaming] of the Clergie
      his brother Constans next aftir him rejoiced the same west-parti.

Derived terms[edit]


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