Joy vs Contentment - What's the difference?

joy | contentment |

As a proper noun joy

is .

As a noun contentment is

the state or degree of being contented.

Other Comparisons: What's the difference?



(wikipedia joy)


  • A feeling of extreme happiness or cheerfulness, especially related to the acquisition or expectation of something good.
  • a child's joy on Christmas morning
  • * , chapter=10
  • , title= The Mirror and the Lamp , passage=It was a joy to snatch some brief respite, and find himself in the rectory drawing–room. Listening here was as pleasant as talking; just to watch was pleasant. The young priests who lived here wore cassocks and birettas; their faces were fine and mild, yet really strong, like the rector's face; and in their intercourse with him and his wife they seemed to be brothers.}}
  • Anything that causes such a feeling.
  • * Bible, 1 Thess. ii. 20
  • Ye are our glory and joy .
  • * Keats
  • A thing of beauty is a joy forever.
  • (obsolete) The sign or exhibition of joy; gaiety; merriment; festivity.
  • * Spenser
  • Such joy made Una, when her knight she found.
  • * Dryden
  • The roofs with joy resound.


    * (feeling of happiness) infelicity, joylessness, unhappiness, unjoy

    Derived terms

    * bundle of joy * cocky's joy * enjoy * joyance * joyful * joygasm * joyless * joyous * joy ride * joystick * jump for joy * killjoy * no joy * overjoy * traveller's joy * unjoy


    (en verb)
  • To feel joy, to rejoice.
  • *:
  • *:for oftymes or this oure lord shewed hym vnto good men and vnto good knyghtes in lykenes of an herte But I suppose from hens forth ye shalle see no more / and thenne they Ioyed moche / and dwelled ther alle that day / And vpon the morowe whan they had herde masse / they departed and commaunded the good man to god
  • *1885 , Sir Richard Burton, The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night , Night 18:
  • *:I swore readily enough to this and he joyed with exceeding joy and embraced me round the neck while love for him possessed my whole heart.
  • (archaic) To enjoy.
  • *1596 , Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Queene , IV.i.2:
  • *:For from the time that Scudamour her bought, / In perilous fight, she neuer ioyed day.
  • *Milton
  • *:Who might have lived and joyed immortal bliss.
  • (obsolete) To give joy to; to congratulate.
  • *Dryden
  • *:Joy us of our conquest.
  • *Prior
  • *:To joy the friend, or grapple with the foe.
  • (obsolete) To gladden; to make joyful; to exhilarate.
  • *Shakespeare
  • *:Neither pleasure's art can joy my spirits.
  • Statistics




  • the state or degree of being contented
  • * 1908 ,
  • Then they got out their boat from the boat-house, sculled down the river home, and at a very late hour sat down to supper in their own cosy riverside parlour, to the Rat's great joy and contentment.
  • happiness in one's situation; satisfaction
  • the neurophysiological experience of satisfaction and being at ease in one's situation, body, and/or mind.
  • Antonyms

    * discontentment