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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
gay
I.adjective
COLLOCATIONS FROM OTHER ENTRIES
a same-sex/gay marriage (=a marriage between two homosexual people, which is not legal in many places)
▪ a proposal to allow same-sex marriage in the state
gay/lesbian rights
▪ a gay rights campaigner
political/gay/animal rights etc activist
the gay community (=people who are homosexual)
▪ This part of the city has a large gay community.
the gay scene (=clubs and pubs where gay people go)
▪ He knew his way around the New York gay scene.
COLLOCATIONS FROM CORPUS
■ ADVERB
openly
▪ He will become the most powerful openly gay man in the world.
▪ The group endorsed 32 openly gay and lesbian candidates in state and local races this year; 27 of them were elected.
▪ He continues to campaign for the right of Catholics to be openly gay.
▪ Barney Frank, D-Mass., one of three openly gay lawmakers.
▪ Overall, the number of openly gay psychologists remains low.
▪ Zingale also said he hopes for the appointment of an openly gay Cabinet secretary.
▪ And under the aegis of the Duke, a powerful protector, Strayhorn was able to live an openly gay life.
■ NOUN
activist
▪ At one point a furious gay activists delegation turned up.
▪ That same year, she supported gay activist Cleve Jones when he considered opposing Brown for his Assembly seat.
▪ He deserves better than to be criticised by gay activists with such a cheap shot.
▪ It took a couple of years to develop, but gay activists say they believe that storm has arrived.
▪ And that is what gay activists in more and more places are seeking.
▪ The 6-3 ruling was hailed by gay activists as a landmark in homosexual rights.
▪ These liberals, these feminists, these gay activists.
▪ The very behaviors that gay activists had spent years promoting seemed to have contained the seeds of disaster.
bar
▪ At the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village eight cops moved in for another raid on a gay bar.
▪ It is a shock when you see some one my size walk into a gay bar.
▪ Two men had jumped them, outside a gay bar.
▪ Many gay bars were, and are, recognized places for picking up partners for one-night stands.
▪ I was the first woman ever into one of the famous gay bars.
▪ Every major city has two gay bars, the Spike and the Eagle.
▪ There are some gay bars in Saigon.
▪ Most of these gay bars are just like ordinary servicemen bars except without girls.
character
▪ In recent years the soap genre has hosted a number of gay characters.
▪ Yes, there are already many minor gay characters on television.
▪ As usual in liberal dramas, the gay character is noble and articulate.
▪ I was behind the daring introduction of that sympathetic gay character named JuJuBes.
▪ The first gay characters appeared on the silent screen 70 years ago, when archly effeminate sissies were exploited for cheap laughs.
community
▪ Castells gives as an example the gay community in San Francisco.
▪ The White House announcement drew bitter reaction from the gay community.
▪ That's very important for the gay community to respect.
▪ The conventional wisdom in the gay community is that 10 percent of the adult population is gay or lesbian.
▪ Other identifications - whether with feminism, the gay community, independent activist organisations - are derided as bourgeois and self-limiting.
▪ If the device is found to be safe, Schatz predicts significant interest in the product within the gay community.
▪ This clause provoked considerable anger amongst the gay community and some concern amongst local authorities.
▪ Late last night, anxious police called a hastily arranged news conference to issue an urgent warning to the gay community.
couple
▪ A gay couple may wish to share a room.
▪ Clinton has opposed extending the legal protections and benefits of marriage to gay couples since 1992, Glynn said.
▪ Lesbian and gay couples should have these rights, too.
▪ Robin Williams plays Armand, the relatively butch half of a gay couple.
▪ Granted, gay couples are denied the basic rights that heterosexual married couples enjoy.
culture
▪ Consider two kinds of ambivalent transgressive reinscription within gay culture, camp and machismo.
▪ To recognize that the transformation of gay culture begins at home.
▪ But of course such differences have always been erotically invested, not least in lesbian and gay cultures.
▪ These standards are built right into gay culture, and operate in thousands of ways.
▪ One of the most basic ways to make gay culture more sustainable is to create an honored place for relationships and fidelity.
▪ But I do take my own role in the acceptance of gay culture in society as one with pride and responsibility.
▪ So perhaps another way to foster a more sustainable gay culture would be to create institutions that promote intergenerational interaction.
▪ Yet urban gay culture works against such regulation in many ways.
group
▪ Gerry: When I started with the organization in 1982 there were no Black or gay groups.
▪ Alistair took up with a well-off gay group on the Hill.
▪ Those countries where public attitudes are most tolerant are those where homosexuals are most visible, and gay groups most active.
▪ After he moved to Jersey, one year he held the banner of some New Jersey gay group.
liberation
▪ It was only in 1977 that I became even vaguely aware of gay liberation.
▪ It may seem odd, but this deviant definition of homosexuality contributed greatly to the rise of gay liberation.
▪ This happened just before I went to the first gay liberation meeting in London.
▪ Far from being accidents, these things characterized the very foundation of what it supposedly meant to experience gay liberation.
▪ Lesbian and gay liberation is perceived as doing so, because liberation. as opposed to rights, threatens the position of the heterosexual family.
▪ The facts of male homosexuality are also endlessly misrepresented and confused by the homosexual women who often speak for gay liberation.
life
▪ Some needed only to know that we existed - that was enough for them to throw themselves wholeheartedly into the gay life.
▪ Their actions, setting and dialogue are sprinkled with touchstones of gay life.
▪ Perhaps Alistair was right: his gay life had been the exception rather than the rule.
▪ The gay life becomes a traumatic and life-changing obsession.
▪ And under the aegis of the Duke, a powerful protector, Strayhorn was able to live an openly gay life.
man
▪ As officially married couples, gay men and lesbians will be able to claim pension benefits if a partner dies.
▪ It has been estimated that in the early eighties the average infected gay man infected an average of five additional gay men.
▪ There were those - particularly gay men - who argued that there was no need for any gay politics at all.
▪ And some gay men have been known to borrow drugs from acquaintances who are HIV-positive.
▪ Are lesbians and gay men born or made?
▪ As gay men grow older they have little to connect them to the vibrancy and hope of a younger generation.
▪ A little voice deep within her asks if going there with five gay men is the best way to achieve this.
▪ The last outbreak of Hepatitis A in the city occurred in 1992 when the virus was localized among gay men.
marriage
▪ But they are wrong to see gay marriage as trivial or frivolous.
▪ Some polls show as many as 70 percent of respondents oppose gay marriage.
▪ Would gay marriage weaken the standard variety?
▪ He supports a ban on gay marriages.
▪ But it looks like Clinton has been grandstanding on the subject of gay marriage.
▪ Moving with unusual speed, the House is expected to approve on Friday a controversial bill to limit gay marriages.
movement
▪ Jeffrey: I like the idea of seeing the gay movement as an attitude of mind.
▪ The gay movement needs to make its case.
▪ This decision is both a success for your organisation and for the international lesbian and gay movement.
▪ We need a gay movement with international contacts, so that we can inform, stimulate and support each other.
people
▪ I think gay people have become a target group for people who no longer target racial minorities.
▪ This was an indication of those gay people who work at all levels of broadcasting.
▪ In addition, there are growing networks of gay religious organizations that provide places for gay people to express their spirituality.
▪ I probably knew about half a dozen gay people intimately.
▪ I think there are a lot of gay people in heavy metal -- everywhere.
▪ It's a mean place for anyone to live, but particularly bad for gay people.
▪ There was a lot of discrimination toward gay people, and others as well.
population
▪ Then in the eighties, as disease swept the gay population, perceptions began to change.
▪ Similar numbers were seen in other cities with large gay populations.
▪ Hepatitis B.. Far more dangerous was the growing epidemic of hepatitis B in the gay population.
world
▪ But it also had an unexpected psychological impact on the gay world itself.
▪ In the gay world, however, almost the opposite was the case.
▪ After Stonewall this process sharply accelerated, creating a radical new medical situation in the gay world.
EXAMPLES FROM OTHER ENTRIES
Gay and lesbian couples should be eligible for the same health benefits as married heterosexual couples.
▪ He didn't even realize that Elton John was gay!
▪ Kirkland is an especially popular figure in the gay community.
▪ the gay community
▪ The president's record with gay rights groups has been good.
▪ There are very few gay men on television.
▪ Thousands of people attended the Gay Pride march in Brighton last weekend.
EXAMPLES FROM CORPUS
▪ As a gay man I find your sudden input of gay advertising patronising.
▪ But once I got into this set of gay men, it took over my social life almost completely.
▪ Frankie, a pleasure-chasing group led by out-front gay men had become family entertainers.
▪ I went to my first gay pub.
▪ Many of the Catholics of this city are gay or lesbian citizens.
▪ The gay protagonist gets shot in the end.
▪ The White House announcement drew bitter reaction from the gay community.
▪ Yet in many urban gay male settings, life is segregated by age to an almost astonishing degree.
II.noun
COLLOCATIONS FROM CORPUS
■ VERB
allow
▪ I believe the three-ring version called the United States already allows gays and lesbians under the tent.
EXAMPLES FROM CORPUS
▪ Placard-wise, however, the gays have some way to go.
▪ The Labour movement might not be a home for lesbians and gays, but it was certainly no longer enemy territory.
▪ The prayers on behalf of lesbians and gays had been quietly halted a few months earlier.
▪ The sun burned with steady fury on the gaggle of gays at the Rambles in Central Park.
▪ We don't see gays being beaten to death in our country because of their sexuality.
▪ Yet gays turning to churches and other institutions for help all too often were told not to worry.
The Collaborative International Dictionary
Gay

Gay \Gay\ (g[=a]), a. [Compar. Gayer; superl. Gayest.] [F. gai, perhaps fr. OHG. g?hi swift, rapid, G. g["a]h, j["a]h, steep, hasty; or cf. OHG. w?hi beatiful, good. Cf. Jay.]

  1. Excited with merriment; manifesting sportiveness or delight; inspiring delight; livery; merry.

    Belinda smiled, and all the world was gay.
    --Pope.

    Gay hope is theirs by fancy fed.
    --Gray.

  2. Brilliant in colors; splendid; fine; richly dressed.

    Why is my neighbor's wife so gay?
    --Chaucer.

    A bevy of fair women, richly gay In gems and wanton dress!
    --Milton.

  3. Loose; dissipated; lewd. [Colloq.]

    Syn: Merry; gleeful; blithe; airy; lively; sprightly, sportive; light-hearted; frolicsome; jolly; jovial; joyous; joyful; glad; showy; splendid; vivacious.

Gay

Gay \Gay\, n. An ornament [Obs.]
--L'Estrange.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary
gay

late 14c., "full of joy, merry; light-hearted, carefree;" also "wanton, lewd, lascivious" (late 12c. as a surname, Philippus de Gay), from Old French gai "joyful, happy; pleasant, agreeably charming; forward, pert" (12c.; compare Old Spanish gayo, Portuguese gaio, Italian gajo, probably French loan-words). Ultimate origin disputed; perhaps from Frankish *gahi (related to Old High German wahi "pretty"), though not all etymologists accept this. Meaning "stately and beautiful; splendid and showily dressed" is from early 14c. The word gay by the 1890s had an overall tinge of promiscuity -- a gay house was a brothel. The suggestion of immorality in the word can be traced back at least to the 1630s, if not to Chaucer:\n\nBut in oure bed he was so fressh and gay\n
Whan that he wolde han my bele chose.\n\nSlang meaning "homosexual" (adj.) begins to appear in psychological writing late 1940s, evidently picked up from gay slang and not always easily distinguished from the older sense:\n\nAfter discharge A.Z. lived for some time at home. He was not happy at the farm and went to a Western city where he associated with a homosexual crowd, being "gay," and wearing female clothes and makeup. He always wished others would make advances to him.

["Rorschach Research Exchange and Journal of Projective Techniques," 1947, p.240]

\nThe association with (male) homosexuality likely got a boost from the term gay cat, used as far back as 1893 in American English for "young hobo," one who is new on the road, also one who sometimes does jobs.\n\n"A Gay Cat," said he, "is a loafing laborer, who works maybe a week, gets his wages and vagabonds about hunting for another 'pick and shovel' job. Do you want to know where they got their monica (nickname) 'Gay Cat'? See, Kid, cats sneak about and scratch immediately after chumming with you and then get gay (fresh). That's why we call them 'Gay Cats'."

[Leon Ray Livingston ("America's Most Celebrated Tramp"), "Life and Adventures of A-no. 1," 1910]

\nQuoting a tramp named Frenchy, who might not have known the origin. Gay cats were severely and cruelly abused by "real" tramps and bums, who considered them "an inferior order of beings who begs of and otherwise preys upon the bum -- as it were a jackal following up the king of beasts" [Prof. John J. McCook, "Tramps," in "The Public Treatment of Pauperism," 1893], but some accounts report certain older tramps would dominate a gay cat and employ him as a sort of slave. In "Sociology and Social Research" (1932-33) a paragraph on the "gay cat" phenomenon notes, "Homosexual practices are more common than rare in this group," and gey cat "homosexual boy" is attested in N. Erskine's 1933 dictionary of "Underworld & Prison Slang" (gey is a Scottish variant of gay).\n

\nThe "Dictionary of American Slang" reports that gay (adj.) was used by homosexuals, among themselves, in this sense since at least 1920. Rawson ["Wicked Words"] notes a male prostitute using gay in reference to male homosexuals (but also to female prostitutes) in London's notorious Cleveland Street Scandal of 1889. Ayto ["20th Century Words"] calls attention to the ambiguous use of the word in the 1868 song "The Gay Young Clerk in the Dry Goods Store," by U.S. female impersonator Will S. Hays, but the word evidently was not popularly felt in this sense by wider society until the 1950s at the earliest.\n\n"Gay" (or "gai") is now widely used in French, Dutch, Danish, Japanese, Swedish, and Catalan with the same sense as the English. It is coming into use in Germany and among the English-speaking upper classes of many cosmopolitan areas in other countries.

[John Boswell, "Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality," 1980]

\nGay as a noun meaning "a (usually male) homosexual" is attested from 1971; in Middle English it meant "excellent person, noble lady, gallant knight," also "something gay or bright; an ornament or badge" (c.1400). As a slang word meaning "bad, inferior, undesirable," from 2000.
Wiktionary
gay

Etymology 1

  1. 1 (context dated English) 2 # happy, joyful, and lively. n. 1 (context chiefly in plural or attributive English) A homosexual, ''especially'' a male homosexual; ''see also'' lesbian. 2 (context obsolete English) An ornament. v

  2. 1 (lb en dated uncommon) To make happy or cheerful. (since at least the 1920s) 2 (lb en uncommon) To cause (an issue, especially AIDS) to be associated with gay people. (popularized in the 1990s) Etymology 2

    n. The name of the letter ⟨'''—'''⟩, which stands for the sound (IPA /ɡ/ English), in Pitman shorthand.

WordNet
gay

n. someone who practices homosexuality; having a sexual attraction to persons of the same sex [syn: homosexual, homo]

gay
  1. adj. bright and pleasant; promoting a feeling of cheer; "a cheery hello"; "a gay sunny room"; "a sunny smile" [syn: cheery, sunny]

  2. 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" [syn: jocund, jolly, jovial, merry, mirthful]

  3. given to social pleasures often including dissipation; "led a gay Bohemian life"; "a gay old rogue with an eye for the ladies"

  4. 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" [syn: brave, braw]

  5. offering fun and gaiety; "a gala ball after the inauguration"; "a festive (or festal) occasion"; "gay and exciting night life"; "a merry evening" [syn: gala(a), festal, festive, merry]

  6. homosexual or arousing homosexual desires [syn: queer, homophile(a)]

Gazetteer
Gay, GA -- U.S. town in Georgia
Population (2000): 149
Housing Units (2000): 69
Land area (2000): 0.860788 sq. miles (2.229431 sq. km)
Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km)
Total area (2000): 0.860788 sq. miles (2.229431 sq. km)
FIPS code: 32384
Located within: Georgia (GA), FIPS 13
Location: 33.093797 N, 84.573924 W
ZIP Codes (1990):
Note: some ZIP codes may be omitted esp. for suburbs.
Headwords:
Gay, GA
Gay
Wikipedia
Gay (disambiguation)

Gay originally used to refer to feelings of being "carefree", "happy", or "bright and showy", but since the 1960s (by reappropriation) has most commonly referred to a male (and later also a female) whose sexual orientation is attraction to persons of the same sex.

Gay may also refer to:

Gay (given name)

Gay (Gaye) is a female or male given name (795th ("Gay") and 1295th ("Gaye") most common female name in the United States, according to the 1990 U.S. census.)

It can also be used as a short form of the female names Gaynell and Gaynor and as a short form of the male names Gaylen and Gaylord.

The writer Gay Talese's name is derived from Gaetano, his grandfather's name.

The first name of the popular male Irish television presenter Gabriel Byrne was always abbreviated as "Gay", as in the title of his radio show The Gay Byrne Show.

Gay

Gay is a term that primarily refers to a homosexual person or the trait of being homosexual. The term was originally used to mean "carefree", "happy", or "bright and showy".

The term's use as a reference to homosexuality may date as early as the late 19th century, but its use gradually increased in the 20th century. In modern English, gay has come to be used as an adjective, and as a noun, referring to the people, especially to gay males, and the practices and cultures associated with homosexuality. By the end of the 20th century, the word gay was recommended by major LGBT groups and style guides to describe people attracted to members of the same sex.

At about the same time, a new, pejorative use became prevalent in some parts of the world. In the Anglosphere, this connotation, among younger speakers, has a meaning ranging from derision (e.g., equivalent to rubbish or stupid) to a light-hearted mockery or ridicule (e.g., equivalent to weak, unmanly, or lame). In this use, the word rarely means "homosexual", as it is often used, for example, to refer to an inanimate object or abstract concept of which one disapproves. The extent to which these usages still retain connotations of homosexuality has been debated and harshly criticized.

Gay (magazine)

Gay was Toronto's first gay magazine, published almost simultaneously with ASK Newsletter, together Canada's first gay magazines. The earliest periodical anywhere to use 'Gay' in its title. Produced by four Toronto men in a commercial venture, the Gay Publishing Company, Gay ran serious articles, letters to the editor, a diary, gossip columns, a feature called the "Gabrial Club", poetry, fiction, politics and a discrete personals column. Gay was illustrated, usually with photographs of drag queens, but also including 'physique' photography.

Intended for a 'mainstream' gay audience it reflected cautious reformism, defending the rights and normalcy of a constituency living in a hostile environment. This was not unlike the political activism emerging in a few large American and European cities before more confrontational activism. Gay also published on Toronto police raids on bars, and on the calls for social and political change that were beginning to surface.

The first five-hundred-copy issue sold out almost immediately. Printing two thousand copies by issue three, distributed to a number of outlets in Toronto and Montreal. Shortly, Gay expanded into the United States as Gay International. It quickly outstripped American publications' distributions, and by the spring of 1965 it was publishing twenty thousand copies across North America and selling about eight thousand. Publication ended in 1966 when criminal charges were levied against one of its central creators.

Gay (surname)

Gay is a surname. Notable people with the surname include:

  • Bill Gay (American football) (born 1927), American football player
  • Bram Gay Trumpet player and brass band enthusiast
  • Brian Gay, American golfer
  • Cesc Gay (born 1967) movie director
  • Claude Gay, French botanist
  • Connie B. Gay (1914–1989), American country music promoter
  • David Gay (1920–2010), British Army officer, recipient of the Military Cross, and English cricketer
  • Edwin Francis Gay (1867-1946), American economist
  • Enola Gay, name of the plane that dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima in 1945, named after the mother of Paul Tibbets
  • George H. Gay, Jr. (1917–1994), Naval aviator in World War II
  • George K. Gay (1810–1882), English sailor and pioneer who participated in Oregon's Provisional Government
  • Henry M. Gay, one of three founders of Triad Systems Corporation, now known as Activant
  • Hobart R. Gay (1894–1983), American general
  • Jacques Etienne Gay (1786–1864) French botanist
  • Jason Gay, birth name of contemporary Christian singer-songwriter Jason Gray. He had many recording and releases as Jason Gay before changing his name to Gray
  • Jean Baptiste Gay, vicomte de Martignac (1778–1832), French statesman
  • John Gay (1685–1732), English dramatist
  • John Gay (photographer) (1909–1999), English photographer
  • Jonathan Gay, inventor of Macromedia Flash
  • José Aurelio Gay (born 1965), Spanish football player and manager
  • Joseph Louis Gay-Lussac (1778–1850), French physicist
  • Mabel Gay (born 1983), Cuban triple jumper
  • Maria Gay (1879–1943), Catalan opera singer
  • Marvin Gay, Sr. (1914–1998), American minister of the House of God
  • Nikolai Ge or Gay (1831–1894), Russian painter
  • Noel Gay (1898–1954), English composer of popular music
  • Paul Gay (born 1968), French opera singer
  • Peter Gay (1923–2015), German-born U.S. historian
  • Randall Gay (born 1982), American football player, currently playing for the New Orleans Saints
  • Robert Marie Gay (1927–2016), Canadian-born Ugandan Roman Catholic prelate, Bishop of Kabale (1996–2003)
  • Ross Gay, American poet and professor
  • Rudy Gay (born 1986), American professional basketball player, currently with the Sacramento Kings
  • Susan Elizabeth Gay, chronicler of the history of Old Falmouth
  • Tyson Gay (born 1982), American sprinter
  • William Gay (disambiguation), several people
  • Virginia Gay (born 1981), Australian actress

Category:English-language surnames Category:French-language surnames

Usage examples of "gay".

Such eyes adazzle dancing with mine, such nimble and discreet ankles, such gimp English middles, and such a gay delight in the mere grace of the lilting and tripping beneath rafters ringing loud with thunder, that Pan himself might skip across a hundred furrows for sheer envy to witness.

What if, for personal reasons, an adolescent wants information about abortion or being gay?

April gambolled in like a lamb this year, and taking a cue from his sprightly kick-up-your-heels mood, the Spring season was all aflutter with the gay bustle of arrivals and departures.

The National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association has an agenda, which is to make sure that Gay-related stories are reported with what it regards as the appropriate slant and the necessary sensitivity.

And then Bee turned to talk to Gay, her interaction with Ana officially over.

The conversation between Bee and Gay was becoming predictably fractious, and Ana pulled herself from her daydreams.

I met him later in a bar and made a gay remark Anent an ancient miner and an option on the Ark.

The gay and even happy air of the newly betrothed surprised me, but what astonished me more was the easy way with which she threw herself into my arms as soon as she saw me.

The weather reflected her spirits, though her future did not seem as bright as the green fields outside the window, the purple aubrietia that spilled over garden walls, the gay red and yellow tulips, the thousands of tiny daisies and dandelions that carpeted the grassy pastures.

The lawns were in beautiful order, and the beds gay with tulips, aubrietias, forget-me-nots, and a lovely show of hyacinths.

Their serious and sequestered life, averse to the gay luxury of the age, inured them to chastity, temperance, economy, and all the sober and domestic virtues.

They had their rise in a total aversion to reflection, a wish to distinguish himself from his retired, and, he thought, unfashionable relations, and an unfortunate coalition with some unprincipled young men, who, because flashy and gay, could lead him to whatever they proposed.

The hours passed by in jests and merriment, and when we sat down to supper I made the champagne corks fly to such an extent that the girls began to get rather gay.

I pray thee, ere thou convince gay attire of inward folly, lest beholding thee we misdoubt thy precept--or thy wisdom.

Instantly Montmagny fell to his knees before the cross in silent adoration, and his example was followed by all the gay train of beplumed officers.