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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ Cousteau, barely in his twenties, was a happy-go-lucky youngster, always eager and willing and a more than competent seaman.
▪ He's fairly happy-go-lucky on the course, except when his putting goes wrong!
▪ He found that he couldn't go out with the lads anymore, and he felt he'd lost his happy-go-lucky side.
▪ He was a big, happy-go-lucky jovial chap, ever smiling and pleasant.
▪ I am sure I am only one of many who will sorely miss this happy-go-lucky golfer.
▪ Likewise, childlike behaviour can also be free, fun-loving, intuitive and happy-go-lucky.
▪ She recognised him as a kindred spirit, with the same happy-go-lucky, questing attitude to life which she herself possessed.
▪ These immediate-return hunter-gatherers never suffer anxiety about the future of food supplies and are characterized by improvident, generous, happy-go-lucky personalities.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Happy \Hap"py\ (h[a^]p"p[y^]), a. [Compar. Happier (-p[i^]*[~e]r); superl. Happiest.] [From Hap chance.]

  1. Favored by hap, luck, or fortune; lucky; fortunate; successful; prosperous; satisfying desire; as, a happy expedient; a happy effort; a happy venture; a happy omen.

    Chymists have been more happy in finding experiments than the causes of them.

  2. Experiencing the effect of favorable fortune; having the feeling arising from the consciousness of well-being or of enjoyment; enjoying good of any kind, as peace, tranquillity, comfort; contented; joyous; as, happy hours, happy thoughts.

    Happy is that people, whose God is the Lord.
    --Ps. cxliv. 15.

    The learned is happy Nature to explore, The fool is happy that he knows no more.

  3. Dexterous; ready; apt; felicitous.

    One gentleman is happy at a reply, another excels in a in a rejoinder.

    Happy family, a collection of animals of different and hostile propensities living peaceably together in one cage. Used ironically of conventional alliances of persons who are in fact mutually repugnant.

    Happy-go-lucky, trusting to hap or luck; improvident; easy-going. ``Happy-go-lucky carelessness.''
    --W. Black.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

also happy go lucky, 1670s as an adverb, "haphazard;" the adjective, of persons, recorded from 1856.


a. carefree or untroubled


adj. cheerfully irresponsible; "carefree with his money"; "freewheeling urban youths"; "had a harum-scarum youth" [syn: carefree, devil-may-care, freewheeling, harum-scarum, slaphappy]


Happy-Go-Lucky is a 2008 British comedy-drama film written and directed by Mike Leigh. The screenplay focuses on a cheerful and optimistic primary-school teacher and her relationships with those around her. The film was well received by critics and resulted in a number of awards for Leigh, lead actress Sally Hawkins and supporting actor Eddie Marsan.

Usage examples of "happy-go-lucky".

As he came across in her exuberant description, he was a happy-go-lucky sharpie with a heart full of larceny but without any vestige of a mean streak, a chipper quick-witted con man with a deck of cards in one hand and a stack of uranium stock in the other, a heavy drinker but not a sloppy one, a big spender and a good-time Charlie, a man whose sense of responsibility and need for security were about as well developed as that of the lilies of the field.

We are descending with dancing footsteps towards a happy-go-lucky ebullience that is much enjoyed by the Palermitans of our time, or rather the time of our sons: an ebullience that has all the appearance of action since it contains within it what I dare to call perpetual motion.

It accounted for the change from the happy-go-lucky shiftlessness to the beaten and defeated and driven attitude.

An artless tune, much like a folksong, was played by a solo bassoon andantino and caprlccioso, happy-go-lucky.

An artless tune, much like a folksong, was played by a solo bassoon andantino and capriccioso, happy-go-lucky.

Next day he toured the Prince of Wales from flying bridge to engine rooms, noting contrasts with American ships, above all the slovenly, overburdened, tense crew, so different from the scrubbed happy-go-lucky Augusta sailors.

Like me, Sevvie had a happy-go-lucky streak that went against the High Seriousness considered appropriate in the most exalted operant circles.