Definition of delight in English:

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Pronunciation: /dɪˈlʌɪt/


[with object]
1Please (someone) greatly: an experience guaranteed to delight both young and old
More example sentences
  • It was here he held court late into the night, cajoling, entertaining and delighting friends from various walks of life.
  • The gods and monsters of khon have been delighting Siamese audiences for the past seven centuries, though for the majority of its history those audiences only included ancient VIPs.
  • The production made its Australian debut in 2000 receiving rave reviews from the Australian press and delighting audiences in Sydney and Melbourne.
please greatly, charm, enchant, captivate, entrance, bewitch, thrill, excite, take someone's breath away;
gladden, gratify, appeal to, do someone's heart good, entertain, amuse, divert
informal send, tickle, give someone a buzz, give someone a kick, tickle pink, bowl over
1.1 [no object] (delight in) Take great pleasure in: they delight in playing tricks
More example sentences
  • It keeps records of wrongs, delights in evil and rejoices in deception.
  • But when we say that ‘This is who X really is’ we are in fact delighting in evil and rejoicing in a lie.
  • I guess it's like this: The things I appreciated most and delighted in were simple.
take great pleasure, find great pleasure, glory, revel, luxuriate, wallow;
adore, love, relish, savour, enjoy greatly, lap up
informal get a kick out of, have a thing about, get a buzz out of, get a thrill out of, get a charge out of, get off on, dig
North American informal get a bang out of


[mass noun]
1Great pleasure: the little girls squealed with delight we broke into an impromptu dance, to the delight of the crowd she took great delight in telling your story
More example sentences
  • He took great delight there to go to the bookbinders' shops and lie gaping on maps.
  • He took great delight that she had already started her golf lessons.
  • The place was overflowing the girls, squealing in delight, holding cameras and cheering.
pleasure, happiness, joy, joyfulness, glee, gladness, gratification, relish, excitement, amusement;
bliss, rapture, ecstasy, elation, euphoria;
transports of delight
humorous delectation
rare jouissance
1.1 [count noun] A cause or source of great pleasure: the trees here are a delight
More example sentences
  • Meanwhile, the city has become a gleaming, shining pretty pearl in a box of pleasures and delights.
  • All disciples of cinematic perversion know too well the delights of suffering in the face of intense pleasure.
  • Bored of earthly delights, he takes his compulsion for pleasure to the nth degree.


Middle English: from Old French delitier (verb), delit (noun), from Latin delectare 'to charm', frequentative of delicere. The -gh- was added in the 16th century by association with light1.

  • For the first three centuries of its life delight was spelled delit, as was its French original. The -gh- spelling emerged in the 16th century, on the model of light and other native English words. Delight has no direct connection with light, though, but goes back ultimately to Latin delectare ‘to charm’. The English name of the sweet Turkish delight was originally lumps of delight (recorded from 1861). It was still a novelty when Charles Dickens wrote in his unfinished novel The Mystery of Edwin Drood: ‘ “I want to go to the Lumps-of-Delight shop.” “To the —?” “A Turkish sweetmeat, sir.” ’ The first known written record of the name Turkish delight is from 1872.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: de|light

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