American English

Definition of joy noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1[uncountable] a feeling of great happiness synonym delight the sheer joy of being with her again to dance for/with joy I didn't expect them to jump for joy at the news (= to be very pleased). To his great joy, she accepted. Thesauruspleasuredelight joy privilege treat honorThese are all words for things that make you happy or bring you enjoyment.pleasure a thing that brings you enjoyment or satisfaction:the pleasures and pains of everyday life It's been a pleasure talking with you.delight a thing or person that brings you great enjoyment or satisfaction:the delights of living in the countryjoy a thing or person that brings you great enjoyment or happiness:the joys and sorrows of childhoodpleasure, delight, or joy?A delight or a joy is greater than a pleasure; a person, especially a child, can be a delight or joy, but not a pleasure;joys are often contrasted with sorrows, but delights are not.privilege (somewhat formal) something that you are proud and lucky to have the opportunity to do:It was a great privilege to hear her sing.treat (informal) a thing that someone enjoyed or is likely to enjoy very much:You've never been to this area before? Then you're in for a real treat.honor (formal) something that you are very pleased or proud to do because people are showing you great respect:It was a great honor to be invited to speak here today.Patterns the pleasures/delights/joys of something It's a great pleasure/joy >to me that…> It's a pleasure/delight/joy/privilege/treat/honor >to do something> It's a pleasure/delight/joy >to see/find…> a pleasure/delight/joy to behold/watch a real pleasure/delight/joy/privilege/treat a great pleasure/joy/privilege/honor a rare joy/privilege/treat/honor
  2. 2[countable] a person or thing that causes you to feel very happy the joys of fatherhood The game was a joy to watch.
  3. Idioms
    somebody's pride and joy
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    a person or thing that causes someone to feel great pleasure or satisfaction The car is her pride and joy.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: joy

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