If you've ever spun in circles until you fell to the ground laughing, you know how it feels to be giddy. This adjective can mean dizzy, elated, or — as in the spinning around example — a lightheaded, lighthearted combination of the two.

The hackneyed phrase "giddy as a schoolgirl" calls forth the image of a kid giggling with her friends over some adolescent foolishness. Giddy has been used to describe someone incapable of serious thought or easily excited as far back as the 16th century. Given that, in modern usage, giddy describes someone silly and frivolous, it's interesting to know that the Old English source for this word has a slightly darker tinge: gidig means "insane" or "god-possessed."

Definitions of giddy
  1. adjective
    lacking seriousness; given to frivolity
    synonyms: airheaded, dizzy, empty-headed, featherbrained, light-headed, lightheaded, silly
    not serious in content or attitude or behavior
  2. adjective
    having or causing a whirling sensation; liable to falling
    “had a headache and felt giddy
    “a giddy precipice”
    synonyms: dizzy, vertiginous, woozy
    ill, sick
    affected by an impairment of normal physical or mental function
  3. adjective
    exultantly proud and joyful; in high spirits
    synonyms: elated
    exultant, exulting, jubilant, prideful, rejoicing, triumphal, triumphant
    joyful and proud especially because of triumph or success
    exhilarated, gladdened
    made joyful
    high, in high spirits
    happy and excited and energetic
    lifted up or set high
    exalted emotionally especially with pride
    characterized by an exaggerated feeling of well-being or elation
    enjoying or showing or marked by joy or pleasure
    full of or characterized by joy
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    affected or marked by low spirits
    utterly cast down
    chapfallen, chopfallen, crestfallen, deflated
    brought low in spirit
    blue, depressed, dispirited, down, down in the mouth, downcast, downhearted, gloomy, grim, low, low-spirited
    filled with melancholy and despondency
    moody and melancholic
    lonely, lonesome
    marked by dejection from being alone
    distressed, dysphoric, unhappy
    generalized feeling of distress
    experiencing or marked by or causing sadness or sorrow or discontent
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