Definition of fairy in English:



  • 1A small imaginary being of human form that has magical powers, especially a female one.

    • ‘It is a part of growing up and I am sure all of us have been fed on stories of ghosts, monsters and fairies when we were children, but as we mature into adults, these beliefs will definitely wear out.’
    • ‘Shakespeare's magical tale of fairies and Amazon queens has been transported to a sort of New France of the imagination.’
    • ‘The fairies not only love human frailty, but also are ardent and devoted lovers of the forest.’
    • ‘The fairies use their powers to do the jobs of the creatures that would usually live there.’
    • ‘Ghosts, monsters, fairies, UFOs and tales of all things supernatural are wanted for a new book on the subject.’
    • ‘In the past when the humans and fairies could get along it was all written down in books, it once was history then it became legend then myth then now it's become stories to entertain children.’
    • ‘The fairy that lost its power made one final wish on those stars.’
    • ‘That moment could not have been more magical even if a fairy had flitted by.’
    • ‘She was beautiful Gaia-she almost reminded him of one of those fairies or magical creatures he had heard about in stories.’
    • ‘One day Lucen was carrying a large load of wood to her work building with a few other female fairies.’
    • ‘Why did I and my sister and the girl who lived in the house at the back, as well as the one whose father kept chickens in the balcony, like to read about goblins and trolls and fairies?’
    • ‘His mother, a fairy queen wept, which was almost unheard for a fairy to show such human emotions.’
    • ‘Before our modern era most people who had encounters knew that what they were dealing with were daemons, dragons, gnomes, fairies and trolls.’
    • ‘The fairies occupied the land in many parts of the world, yet just like the multiple races of humans or demons, fairies have several of their own.’
    • ‘I love magical things like fairies and goblins.’
    • ‘Because some fairies hate humans and half fairies, they hate humans because they cast us out of our natural homes above ground.’
    • ‘The book is based on the story of a crafty 12-year-old Irish boy who is immersed in a world of fairies, leprechauns and gnomes.’
    • ‘The female fairy flew up and grabbed his hair and pulled on it impatiently.’
    • ‘It says everything your inner child wants to hear: believe in fairies and the powers of the imagination; and no matter how bad real life can become, you can always visit Neverland.’
    • ‘Articulations of disbelief were passed on and shared by community members much like, and together with, stories and beliefs that affirmed the reality of the fairies and the powers of fairy healers.’
    sprite, pixie, elf, imp, brownie, puck
    dwarf, gnome, goblin, hobgoblin, troll
    leprechaun, pishogue, sidhe
    faerie, fay
    nix, nixie, hob, elfin
    View synonyms
  • 2offensive, informal A male homosexual.


  • Belonging to, resembling, or associated with fairies.

    [as modifier] ‘fairy gold’
    • ‘She's more of the princess in ballroom dress or the magical fairy type.’
    • ‘Her fairy powers were drawn tightly around her, like a cloak.’
    • ‘A breathtaking ballet is set in the magical world of a fairy kingdom, where the King and Queen are celebrating the birth of their daughter, Princess Aurora.’


Middle English (denoting fairyland, or fairies collectively): from Old French faerie, from fae a fairy from Latin fata the Fates plural of fatum (see fate). Compare with fay.