Definition of whimsical in English:



  • 1Playfully quaint or fanciful, especially in an appealing and amusing way.

    ‘a whimsical sense of humor’
    • ‘Often intended for children, such verse also appeals to an adult sense of the ridiculous or whimsical.’
    • ‘Though some are light and whimsical, they emerge from a passion for both writing and reading that goes beyond mere observation.’
    • ‘Fonseca's pictures are at once whimsical and orderly, playful and restrained.’
    • ‘It has terrific moments, especially early on, often anticipating Fellini in tone and setting, but it is a bit too jauntily whimsical for us now.’
    • ‘Looking out the window, I can see an orange flame of whimsical light skimming the horizon, and hues of blue to grey look down benignly from above.’
    • ‘Frater surely pays his respects to the whimsical monsoon gods through his pilgrimage covering the length and breadth of the country.’
    • ‘Helen Evans has fourteen gouache paintings, bright, whimsical and cartoon-like, most depicting the antics of her dog Hobbs.’
    • ‘The question is whimsical, but perhaps it illustrates something.’
    • ‘For those of you left with any doubt, the play is musical, whimsical and highly enjoyable - a perfect family night out.’
    • ‘A father and son children's book: vivid illustrations by son Carl, whimsical poems by father Peter.’
    • ‘This whimsical piece of mischief by his brother brought a quiet laugh from David.’
    • ‘Many of the pieces have come from his own personal collection - which reveal his witty and whimsical sense of humour, and a love of the bush.’
    • ‘The ceiling is hung with lamps of every shape and size, from glass floats tied with rope to whimsical creations made of seashells.’
    • ‘But how many know the story of J.M. Barrie, the eccentric author of the whimsical Peter Pan?’
    • ‘His new song Mother and Child opened the dedication service and captured the whimsical and delightful spirit of the work.’
    • ‘Some spoilsport reviewers have referred to the lyrics as smug and smirking; I prefer to view them as wry and whimsical.’
    • ‘How did an impoverished North Philadelphia community transform abandoned lots into whimsical sculpture gardens?’
    • ‘This album was largely whimsical and retrospective, with a subtle sense of humour, even through the more serious numbers.’
    • ‘She and friends would flip the painting from the more serious to the whimsical side during parties at Emmott's house many years ago.’
    • ‘Ali's whimsical rendering of this imagined place evokes subtle feelings of nostalgia, and regret.’
    fanciful, playful, mischievous, waggish, quaint, fantastic, unusual, curious, droll
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  • 2Acting or behaving in a capricious manner.

    ‘the whimsical arbitrariness of autocracy’
    • ‘Mulvany could also build in a light and whimsical manner, especially when it came to gate lodges.’
    • ‘Victims of the whimsical monsoons and fickle market prices, these poor farmers have very little control over their destiny.’
    • ‘He closed his eyes and listened to the Forestmaster's whimsical voice change to a somber, sorrowful tone.’
    • ‘Last night, our coach got a little whimsical and changed up the infield a bit.’
    • ‘This is a story about rootlessness, about impulsive, ostensibly whimsical wandering.’
    • ‘A solid master plan helps prevent whimsical changes being made by each new greens committee’
    • ‘The High Court said while granting maintenance, some formula or yardstick must be adopted and it must not be whimsical or arbitrary.’
    • ‘They clearly seek to exercise power in whimsical and arbitrary ways.’
    • ‘John was known as a whimsical man who often changed the inventory of his cargo to fit his mood.’
    volatile, capricious, temperamental, impulsive, excitable, fickle, changeable, unpredictable, variable, erratic, quicksilver, mercurial, mutable, inconstant, inconsistent, unstable, unsteady, fluctuating, ever-changing, protean, kaleidoscopic, fluid, wavering, vacillating, wayward
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