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(1)   Bright and pleasant; promoting a feeling of cheer
"A cheery hello"
"A gay sunny room"
"A sunny smile"
(2)   Brightly colored and showy
"Girls decked out in brave new dresses"
"Brave banners flying"
"`braw' is a Scottish word"
"A dress a bit too gay for her years"
"Birds with gay plumage"
(3)   Homosexual or arousing homosexual desires
(4)   Given to social pleasures often including dissipation
"Led a gay Bohemian life"
"A gay old rogue with an eye for the ladies"
(5)   Offering fun and gaiety
"A festive (or festal) occasion"
"Gay and exciting night life"
"A merry evening"
(6)   Full of or showing high-spirited merriment
"When hearts were young and gay"
"A poet could not but be gay, in such a jocund company"- Wordsworth
"The jolly crowd at the reunion"
"Jolly old Saint Nick"
"A jovial old gentleman"
"Have a merry Christmas"
"Peals of merry laughter"
"A mirthful laugh"


(7)   Someone who practices homosexuality; having a sexual attraction to persons of the same sex

Proper noun

  1. , originally a nickname for a cheerful or lively person.
  2. from the word gay, "joyful"; rare today.
  3. . Also a shortened form of Gabriel, Gaylord and similar names, or transferred from the surname.
    • 1992 Gay Talese, Unto the Sons, Ballantine Books 1993, ISBN 0804110336, page 15
      - - - my father's father, Gaetano Talese ( whose name I inherited after my birth in 1932, in the anglicized from of "Gay"), was an atypically fearless traveler,
    • 2004 Annie Proulx, Bad Dirt, Fourth Estate, ISBN 0007196911, page 32
      "Mr Gay Brawls. What a name."
      "It didn't use to mean what it means now. Plenty were named Gay. Even in Nevada. Was old Gay Pitch had a gas station in Winnemucca. Nobody thought nothin about it and he raised a railroad car of kids.- - -