and, tonight, I present:

galavanting


one of my mother's favourite words. . . had something to do with "painting the town red" (but being her, it was critical not joyous) (come to think of it, most of what she said was critical rather than joyous)

right, I'm just off to find out more about that interesting word. . .

ho hum
.


.
"gallivant" (from Wiktionary) alternative spelling: galavant, from gallant; (C19th apparently): it's an "intransitive" verb, the infinitive of which is to gallivant; (there is an obselete definition: to flirt, to romance - which I'll leave in for vicus and dave)
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more commonly it means to roam about for pleasure without any definite plan (which sounds good to me, but no wonder my mother didn't approve!)

and the W-dictionary provides a short illustration of the usage, just to make sure we're talking about the same thing:

"Bertram, it is true, when he heard of the plan, rebelled, and asserted that what Billy needed was a rest, an entire rest from care and labour. In fact, what he wanted her to do, he said, was to gallivant - to gallivant all day long." Eleanor H.Porter: Miss Billy - Married, Chapter 18. 1914

lucky Miss Billy I say!

(actually, I'm dismayed, I thought there'd be far more to it than that; I might have to go off and do some more research. . .) (*goes off) (*returns*) (OK! found this, which is slightly more interesting: to go about usually ostentatiously or indiscreetly with members of the opposite sex*, but I was after something from Old Norsk to be perfectly honest) (and does that mean that one can't gallivant with members of the same sex? eh?) (and finally, I draw a blank, apart from to say I prefer gallivant to the alternatives: traipse, ramble, meander, junket, travel, wander, roam, stray, rove, gad about, range) (altho I do quite like the word meander, as it makes me think of rivers and streams and I like rivers and streams, and I've always liked wander and roam, but they don't have quite the same humour attached, do they? more romantic in the traditional sense, I'd say) (and gad about is somewhat mad, and we've done quite enough of that here)

(*and this is probably what my mother was so disapproving of. . .) (that woman has a lot to answer for)

10 comments:

Mangonel said...

I'd like to think that this might have a more - let's say, practical application in your life than mere dictionary work . . .

Rimshot said...

If there is, indeed, a link between gallivant (my computer claims that 'gallavant' is wrong) and gallant, then I would assume gallivanting would be a good thing, as gallantry is generally (I believe) considered good, no?

dinahmow said...

One of my favourite words! (Except when in the gloaming, in which case one really needs to roam!)
Quite unrelated, except that it's on the same page in the OED, I find gallimaufry. I thought that's where Dr. Who came from/went to? See what yer've gorn an' done? Got me gallivanting all over the universe!
(I think I need another coffee...)

Dash said...

As one who has 'gallivanted' with members of both her own and the opposite sex, I'd just like to say that it is most definitely possible to gallivant with both.

mig bardsley said...

Oh yes. You can gallivant with anyone. Doesn't even have to be one person. I'm sure you can do it in large groups or singly or in pairs. the main thing is to have fun doing it :)

sorrow11 said...

Unsubscribe?
balderdash!
I'de rather go gallivanting in the
garden!
...
...
:)

Dave said...

I could do with a good gallivant.

Mel said...

Oh geeze......

I wonder if 'gallivant' was one of those parental words of choice?

I distinctly remember my father's negative tone when he used that word.......like it was a bad thing to go on frolicking adventures?!

<---goes gallivanting a LOT

LIKES to gallivant! ;-)

mig bardsley said...

Frolicking! Another really fun thing to do :)

mig bardsley said...

Oh and I notice that Blogger swallowed my other comment about how much I enjoyed your wanderings and meanderings among the stray alternatives to gallivanting :)