Definition of jest in English:
- Quebec never made demands to the federal government in jest or with flippant jokes.
- He often said that in jest, and Kat joked about it with him.
- In jest or not, this is not particularly sporting if you ask me.
verb[no object] Back to top
- Mocking a few for not knowing the band's hometown heroes the MC5, the Suicide Machines joked and jested throughout a powerful (but disturbingly short) set.
- I sipped my ale, and wondered what if anything the two men had spoken of while I jested with Hildfleda.
- ‘Tonight shows my sense of fortitude and courage,’ he jested.
late Middle English: from earlier gest, from Old French geste, from Latin gesta 'actions, exploits', from gerere 'do'. The original sense was 'exploit, heroic deed', hence 'a narrative of such deeds' (originally in verse); later the term denoted an idle tale, hence a joke (mid 16th century).
In the Middle Ages a jest was not a joke but a notable exploit. It was spelled gest, and came from the Latin word gesta ‘actions, exploits’. It has the same root as gesture (Late Middle English). Jest came to be used for a narrative of someone's deeds, and from that became a word for ‘an idle story’ and then ‘a joke’.
Words that rhyme with jestabreast, arrest, attest, beau geste, behest, bequest, best, blessed, blest, breast, Brest, Bucharest, Budapest, celeste, chest, contest, crest, digest, divest, guest, hest, infest, ingest, lest, Midwest, molest, nest, northwest, pest, prestressed, protest, quest, rest, self-addressed, self-confessed, self-possessed, southwest, suggest, test, Trieste, unaddressed, unexpressed, unimpressed, unpressed, unstressed, vest, west, wrest, zest
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