Definition of happy in US English:

happy

adjectivehappiest, happier

  • 1Feeling or showing pleasure or contentment.

    ‘Melissa came in looking happy and excited’
    with clause ‘we're just happy that he's still alive’
    with infinitive ‘they are happy to see me doing well’
    • ‘His father, Phillip, paid him a visit to see how his new life was suiting him and was content that Paul seemed happy.’
    • ‘I realised that I am actually fairly happy and contented with my life.’
    • ‘It will be a clear message from Islamabad that it is not happy over the content of talks.’
    • ‘I feel very happy and content to be at home in the warm, listening to good music and doing nothing much.’
    • ‘He left the pub happy, full and content in the knowledge that the pub staff had done their best for him.’
    • ‘The feel of the warm moist soil around my roots as they got stronger and ever deeper into the ground made me feel happy and contented.’
    • ‘Our son has been attending the Créche for nearly five months and so far he is very happy and content, as indeed we are.’
    • ‘Many of those families who are in relief camps today were people like us leading happy and contented lives.’
    • ‘Surely you can't have more than one quiet, smiling, happy and contented day in a row?’
    • ‘The world is chockful of people who have lived happy, contented lives and who have made a deep impact on the arts.’
    • ‘He loved the gardening and spent many happy and very contented hours tending to the flowers and the shrubs and the trees.’
    • ‘I can have a quiet beer and look out over an (again hopefully) happy throng and feel content.’
    • ‘Having disposed of his family farm he acquired a new home at Lissard where he and his wife were contented and happy.’
    • ‘She takes with her the good wishes of the community and she is wished a happy and contented retirement in Derrymore.’
    • ‘It cannot possibly be your fault, in fact, in may be because of you she had a happy and content life.’
    • ‘Delia enjoyed good health up to the last and was always happy and content out and about on the land and taking care of the family home.’
    • ‘The point is I know two depressed people and I'm finding their intrusions into my happy and contented life to be a bit annoying.’
    • ‘If my observation serves me right, old folks are generally happy and contented with the way they spend their free time.’
    • ‘Now is the time to scrap the Trust and get back to clean wards, happy contented staff, striving for high standards and just rewards.’
    • ‘A man of the land, he was happy and content in the peace and quiet of this lovely and historic part of County Roscommon.’
    contented, content, cheerful, cheery, merry, joyful, jovial, jolly, joking, jocular, gleeful, carefree, untroubled, delighted, smiling, beaming, grinning, glowing, satisfied, gratified, buoyant, radiant, sunny, blithe, joyous, beatific, blessed
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1happy aboutpredicative Having a sense of confidence in or satisfaction with (a person, arrangement, or situation)
      ‘I was never very happy about the explanation’
      ‘I can't say they looked too happy about it, but a deal's a deal’
      • ‘Pitch doesn't look very happy about the situation, but he doesn't push Milon aside to get to me.’
      • ‘The fish seemed pretty happy about this, unaware of the health risks it entails for them.’
      • ‘In an interview with the STAR on Monday Joseph said there was not much to be happy about.’
      • ‘I am not very happy about having stuff that has been flown in from abroad.’
      • ‘By the way, in case anyone is wondering, I am not happy about the Tory taking the seat.’
      • ‘Well, I have made a lot of new friends thanks to this blog and I feel happy about it.’
      • ‘I was not at all happy about the way they waved their batons at anyone who even looked at them funny.’
      • ‘Now, she is happy about her decision and gives credit to her husband for this changeover.’
      • ‘The reasons they've given are pathetic and even their own fans who I've heard from are not happy about it.’
      • ‘She was so happy about it, so in my mind that is my final gift to her.’
      • ‘I can't imagine the drivers being too happy about the possibility of further regulation.’
      • ‘He is most happy about the gradual transformation in the personality of the children.’
      • ‘One thing is for certain - if this lady blows her top, many will not be happy about it.’
      • ‘He is happy about the arrangement and believes it will help him adjust to life in the community.’
      • ‘The boys at this table weren't happy about talking to someone from the Peak either.’
      • ‘He is less happy about the expense of arranging international tours for his company.’
      • ‘The person who has or who shows such inclination in his or her youth should be proud and happy about it.’
      • ‘I think that, at the time, villagers were not too happy about it being built.’
      • ‘Each of the companies has been informed of this and is happy about it.’
      • ‘I'm just not happy about having to compete with anyone else for her attention.’
    2. 1.2happy withpredicative Satisfied with the quality or standard of.
      ‘I'm happy with his performance’
      • ‘I have been happy with my performance and to be fair the crowd have been good with me.’
      • ‘I then often do about three sketches for each character before I am happy with a final one.’
      • ‘Tiago struggled to get heat into his tyres; so he is not very happy with his performance.’
      • ‘I am very happy with the school and I feel the vitriolic tone of the writing needs comment.’
      • ‘The only Millwall people happy with a goalless draw yesterday were the club stewards.’
      • ‘Are you happy with the quality of the policy file that you have seen from Operation Helios?’
      • ‘He has been working at eight other cancer shops in the South West and said he was happy with the results.’
      • ‘So I am not happy with the size of the squad, but I am certainly happy with the quality of it.’
      • ‘He'll be driving through the gates at The Belfry a man happy with his lot and his position in the game.’
      • ‘I cannot be happy with my performance because the team as a whole hasn't had results.’
      • ‘Though in one case a crew was advising a cox that they were not happy with his performance.’
      • ‘Surely to God they have a right to a release date and in a format they are happy with.’
      • ‘I wasn't too happy with them so I hid them in a paper bag and pushed them to the back side of the picnic table.’
      • ‘It will definitely take a lot more tweaking to get me completely happy with it.’
      • ‘I am not overly happy with this recipe, next time I am going to try a different one.’
      • ‘Naturally, you return the first one to the shop and tell them that you're just not happy with it.’
      • ‘If we win it on Sunday it will have been a good season for me but if we lose it then I'm not going to be happy with the season.’
      • ‘If you're happy with the way things are going, don't be afraid to let your feelings be known.’
      • ‘Are you happy with the role of these representative groups in the diversity programme?’
      • ‘We would have been happy with a phasing-in of freedom of contract over three or four years.’
    3. 1.3with infinitive Willing to do something.
      ‘we will be happy to advise you’
      • ‘Every time a major tournament comes round we seem quite happy to plod through games and play it safe.’
      • ‘Connolly was happy to reveal his game plan, the old footy channel told us.’
      • ‘Firstly, any member on this side of the House would be happy to advise you who made the interjection.’
      • ‘If the blanket fails, trading standards staff will be happy to dispose of them.’
      • ‘If you are happy to do that, I am more than happy to advise you on every stage through to the finished rig.’
      • ‘I am happy to play the game as long as I am entitled to win some points occasionally.’
      • ‘He had a natural affinity with the land and was always glad and happy to help his neighbours.’
      • ‘We are also happy to advise on any other funds that you may wish to discuss.’
      • ‘She is very modest about her meteoric success, is not daunted by it and is happy to enjoy the game.’
      • ‘Mr Walker said he would be happy to advise anybody about the way Ryesport was set up and the benefits it brought.’
      • ‘A game she'd be happy to continue if only it could be light and daring, an adventure of secret intrigue and romance.’
      • ‘So long as advisers are happy to provide good quality financial advice for a fair and open fee, they should have nothing to fear.’
      • ‘For all of the first half, France appeared happy to play the game on Ireland's terms.’
      • ‘As a reviewer, sometimes I'm perfectly happy to receive a game well after it's been released.’
      • ‘After netting nine goals in the previous four games, Hoyle was happy to play a supporting role against Gabriels.’
      • ‘Many people said they trusted their adviser and would be happy to recommend him or her to a friend.’
      • ‘We are more than happy to advise residents of how not to cause a nuisance to their neighbours.’
      • ‘United Future is always pleased and happy to support sensible legislation.’
      • ‘Local Citizens' Advice Bureaux will also be more than happy to advise and help fill in any paperwork at no cost.’
      • ‘Mayo Cat Rescue is happy to advise people on many aspects of cat care, so please phone us for help should you need it.’
      willing, glad, ready, pleased, delighted, contented
      View synonyms
    4. 1.4 (of an event or situation) characterized by happiness.
      ‘we had a very happy, relaxed time’
      • ‘And if success requires a happy ending, then beginnings must be altered as well.’
      • ‘Though the play has a happy ending through a strange turn of events, its underlying dark side remains in my mind.’
      • ‘Negative equity, when the house is worth less than the mortgage, is not a happy situation to be in.’
      • ‘Should I just let it all finish here, or should I continue so it ends with a happy ending?’
      • ‘For Margie and her family, the rescue was a happy ending and the end of a horrible ordeal.’
      • ‘He would have had to continue for another three decades to give it a happy ending.’
      • ‘To tell you the truth I have only seen him that mad once, and that wasn't a very happy situation.’
      • ‘For supporters of Kenneth Marsh, the scene had all the makings of an emotional happy ending.’
      • ‘There was no way I was going to escape from this situation with a happy ending.’
      • ‘It just turns what should be a simple happy situation into a complicated awkward one.’
      • ‘I didn't expect this happy situation to change when I arrived in Central Australia.’
      • ‘It is a happy situation, and I hope that the media will take that into account, and allow us to get on with our family life.’
      • ‘They are wished health, happiness and many more such happy occasions in the decades ahead.’
      • ‘There can be a happy ending that ends with the two of them with different persons.’
      • ‘Time lasts forever and not all love stories with a happy ending must end up in a wedding.’
      • ‘In the event of this extremely happy situation, the policy pays the player as well!’
      • ‘A happy situation for us is when a Tagore could be a Bengali and simultaneously a great Indian poet.’
      • ‘It was a very special event that turned out to be a happy reunion with a lot of old friends.’
      • ‘Nowadays, consumption of alcohol is on the increase, be it for a happy occasion or a sad event.’
      • ‘The Beijing Morning Post front page above has a photo of the event's happy ending.’
    5. 1.5attributive Used in greetings.
      ‘happy birthday’
      • ‘I quickly ran to him and wished him happy birthday and he in return hugged me and told me to sit in the blanket because I was very cold.’
      • ‘Well, today is Dr. D's fortieth birthday, so you all should drop by his site and wish him a happy birthday.’
      • ‘I recorded a short video message on the new camera saying happy birthday to my grandmother who is 100 years old tomorrow.’
      • ‘Declan is the principal of Mount Sion Primary School and his family and friends wish him a belated happy birthday.’
      • ‘Michelle squealed a happy greeting and rushed forward to enfold him in a hug.’
      • ‘What I got was a much less happy greeting and it didn't sound like female at all.’
      • ‘A very happy birthday to them both from all their friends in Rostrevor.’
      • ‘A happy birthday is wished to Kieran Dunne from his many friends.’
      • ‘Also happy birthday and best wishes to Mena who was 50 years old last week.’
      • ‘A popular employee of Bausch and Lomb, all her family and friends wish Jennifer a very happy birthday.’
      • ‘It's some dead queen's birthday and what better way to wish someone a happy birthday than to bounce the weekend away?’
      • ‘Ted just turned a big milestone, as you know, and I wished him happy birthday by videotape.’
      • ‘It wouldn't be right if I didn't wish happy birthday to somebody, now would it?’
      • ‘Are you really serving the government when Willard Scott is wishing you happy birthday?’
      • ‘We hope Joe Rocks a Newtown man now living in Creggan had a recent happy birthday.’
      • ‘Finally seasons greetings and a happy New Year to all who have supported this work.’
      • ‘Mr. King, the Dallas Cowboy cheerleaders are here to wish you a very happy birthday.’
      • ‘A very happy 18th birthday is wished to Amanda Dowd from her family and friends.’
      • ‘First of all, happy birthday to Big John, who is our techie here at work.’
      • ‘Saying her last happy greeting, Faith began making her escape through the door.’
  • 2attributive Fortunate and convenient.

    ‘he had the happy knack of making people like him’
    • ‘She has the happy knack of making the most mundane report appear interesting.’
    • ‘I thus have been inclined to write off the success of my prediction as just a happy accident.’
    • ‘The league has the happy knack of throwing them up so this is as a good a match as any to opt for one.’
    • ‘McDowell has the happy knack of convincing us that all he wants to do with his life is to serve the people.’
    • ‘Andrew's always had that happy knack of cutting straight to the chase, delighting and upsetting in roughly equal measures.’
    • ‘The Sharks coach is in the happy situation of having a clean injury slate for his teams most important match of the season so far.’
    • ‘My second oldest brother, who is nine years older than me, always had the happy knack of being able to bustle me.’
    • ‘Both these teams have discovered the happy knack of surprising their critics.’
    • ‘Munster have the happy knack of bouncing back, of taking defeat and building on it.’
    • ‘When it comes to the real thing however, Rangers have developed a happy knack of hitting the target.’
    • ‘He has a strong personality, continuity of purpose, a mind well stored and a happy knack of communicating it.’
    • ‘Call it a happy knack of being in the right place at the right time.’
    • ‘Sri Lanka find themselves in that happy situation after their innings and 15 run victory at Galle.’
    • ‘For opportunities appear, at first glance, to have a happy knack of falling into the lap of the third season trainer.’
    • ‘The range in the city is broader than in most places, and the locals seem to have a happy knack with fish dishes particularly.’
    fortunate, lucky, favourable, advantageous, opportune, timely, well-timed, convenient, propitious, felicitous, auspicious, beneficial, helpful
    View synonyms
  • 3informal in combination Inclined to use a specified thing excessively or at random.

    ‘our litigation-happy society’

Phrases

  • (as) happy as a clam (at high tide)

    • Extremely happy.

  • happy hunting ground

    • A place where success or enjoyment is obtained.

      • ‘Odsal Sedbergh went down from Division One having only won one game all season but at least Division Four has proved a happy hunting ground with Undercliffe Wyke and Thornton in the top four.’
      • ‘The Lancashire Amateur Shield proved a happy hunting ground with only Ashton losing to outside competition.’
      • ‘The Doncaster-based club has not proved to be a happy hunting ground for the Sandhill Laners with five defeats from five visits.’
      • ‘Mr Collins can argue that Clare, as it adjoins Limerick, has proved a happy hunting ground.’
      • ‘The Middle East, which is awash with petrodollars thanks to the surge in world oil prices, has proved a happy hunting ground for western defence groups in recent months.’
      • ‘Mrs. Gay Cross made the presentation to winner owner Pat Daly who must have been delighted that he made the long journey from Cork to Newbridge which is proving such a happy hunting ground for him.’
      • ‘Bangsaray was the fishing venue for Fish & Trips on August 28, which proved to be a happy hunting ground for the team.’
      • ‘South Yorkshire proved to be a happy hunting ground for Heworth's Neil Smith as he landed one of the county's major prizes.’
      • ‘Wigan's home ground again proved a happy hunting ground for the slick-handling Saints who had this game won by half-time.’
      • ‘Thirsk proved a happy hunting ground for City of York VI as they beat the home side's second string 4-1.’
      paradise, nirvana, the kingdom of heaven, the promised land, the heavenly kingdom, the city of god, the celestial city, the abode of god, the abode of the saints, the abode of the angels, zion, abraham's bosom, the empyrean
      View synonyms

Origin

Middle English (in the sense ‘lucky’): from the noun hap + -y.

Pronunciation

happy

/ˈhapē//ˈhæpi/