Frivolity is a type of clownishness or silliness. Frivolity is the opposite of getting down to business in a serious way.

If people are running around a classroom, throwing things, and laughing, the teacher might say, "Why all the frivolity?" This is a word for clowning or horsing around — not being serious. There's a happy flavor to this word. Giggling when you should be listening could be considered frivolity. Also, anything that's insignificant is a type of frivolity, as in "That's nothing! Just a bit of frivolity!"

Definitions of frivolity

n the trait of being frivolous; not serious or sensible

earnestness, serious-mindedness, seriousness, sincerity
the trait of being serious
show 11 types...
hide 11 types...
giddiness, silliness
an impulsive scatterbrained manner
a manner lacking seriousness
fun, playfulness
a disposition to find (or make) causes for amusement
lightness, lightsomeness
the trait of being lighthearted and frivolous
flippancy, light-mindedness
inappropriate levity
humorousness, jocoseness, jocosity, merriness
the trait of merry joking
playful humor
archness, impertinence, perkiness, pertness, sauciness
inappropriate playfulness
friskiness, frolicsomeness, sportiveness
lively high-spirited playfulness
impishness, mischievousness, puckishness, whimsicality
the trait of behaving like an imp
humor, humour, sense of humor, sense of humour
the trait of appreciating (and being able to express) the humorous
Type of:
a distinguishing feature of your personal nature

n acting like a clown or buffoon

buffoonery, clowning, harlequinade, japery, prank
schtick, schtik, shtick, shtik
(Yiddish) a prank or piece of clowning
Type of:
craziness, folly, foolery, indulgence, lunacy, tomfoolery
foolish or senseless behavior

n something of little value or significance

bagatelle, fluff, frippery
Type of:
small beer, trifle, trivia, triviality
something of small importance

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.