Definition of reverie in US English:



  • 1A state of being pleasantly lost in one's thoughts; a daydream.

    ‘a knock on the door broke her reverie’
    ‘I slipped into reverie’
    • ‘Who was the fraud, the vicious self-appointed censor, or the artist who toiled daily to transmit to future ages his graceful and winning reveries?’
    • ‘Mark's reveries turn to the minor humiliations he will be able to impose on his flatmate if he gets the job.’
    • ‘At those times I enter one of those far off reveries, the kind that lead people to say nervously, ‘Penny for your thoughts.’’
    • ‘It conjures up old reveries of carnivals and roadside zoos, sideshows and state fairs - huge tents fetid with the sweet stench of anticipation.’
    • ‘The laughter of my children finally broke my reverie.’
    • ‘In prewar days, she had occupied her time with a little leisurely sewing or gardening and reading her library books, her gentle reveries interrupted only by afternoon tea brought to her on a tray.’
    • ‘Having been picked up by a black cab from the Hilton Hotel, where I had been watching the pugilists weigh-in on Friday afternoon, my reverie was soon rather rudely interrupted.’
    • ‘Should you on your journey be startled out of your reveries by marauding dogs snapping and barking at your heels, take note of these guidelines, they may be of help.’
    • ‘Trains however, sway gently through the landscape and lull one into a pleasant reverie.’
    • ‘Morrison rouses himself out of his beery reverie.’
    • ‘A good deal of waking life is punctuated by daydreams, reveries, and fantasies in which the mind withdraws to contemplate an interior landscape.’
    • ‘It's best not to stare at children too hard these days, but listening to them I found myself in some kind of reverie for my own lost youth.’
    • ‘The column is so full of nostalgia and reveries that it's a bit hard to locate the argument, but I think this paragraph is it.’
    • ‘This slight premise is barely spelled out before each of the guests drift into reveries illustrating how they've arrived at this point in their lives.’
    • ‘But the mechanic interrupts the reverie to explain that the repair is going to take longer and cost more than expected.’
    • ‘My pleasant reverie was broken by Mike tugging at my arm and pleading: ‘Can I have a bike, Dad, please?’’
    • ‘I shook my head again to get out of my fanciful reverie.’
    • ‘I was drifting off into reveries of one sort or another, when I heard a voice.’
    • ‘Credo knocked Dan out of his reverie with a jab to his ribs.’
    • ‘It's not every day that I'm jolted out of a lazy reverie by an estate agent and a potential purchaser standing in the middle of my bedroom, admiring the view from the window.’
    daydream, daydreaming, trance, fantasy, vision, fancy, hallucination, musing
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    1. 1.1Music An instrumental piece suggesting a dreamy or musing state.
      • ‘Certainly the singer could hardly make a bigger contrast with the leader's light-footed oud playing or Mirabassi's clarinet reveries, at times hardly seeming to disturb the air.’
      • ‘The album splits between twisted, skewed rock anthems and eerie reveries such as the whispery ‘Someone's in the Wolf’.’
      • ‘Sal describes the jazz reverie of the pianist, Slim Galliard.’
    2. 1.2archaic A fanciful or impractical idea or theory.
      • ‘We well know the small influence these gentry exert upon our society, and how the technicians of every order distrust them and rightly refuse to take their reveries seriously.’
      • ‘Yet there is also no denying the fact that most of these fancy reveries were introduced into China quite late, since the 1930s.’
      • ‘Which brought me again to my whole reverie about steel: As much as we prize things in this culture, we do not much fetishize the process by which they were made.’
      • ‘We now take a more cynical, or at least a more bemused, view of such analogistic reveries, for we recognize that the cosmos, in all its grandness, does not exist for us or as a mirror of our centrality in the scheme of universal things.’
      • ‘More painful by far than reveries of the uncharted future is the thought of the shut and sealed annals of the past.’
      idea, notion, fancy
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Early 17th century: from obsolete French resverie, from Old French reverie ‘rejoicing, revelry’, from rever ‘be delirious’, of unknown ultimate origin.