adjective: sprightly in manner or appearance : lively
Flashbulbs lit up the scene as the bubbly actress sashayed down the red carpet, wearing a jaunty little headpiece that complemented her airy designer gown.
“As Soapy Smith, a homeless guy down on his luck, his ability to recreate every aspect of this jaunty, sly survivor is perfect.” — From a theater review by Edith McCauley in the Rock River Times (Illinois), December 18-24, 2013
Did you know?
You might not guess that the words “jaunty” and “genteel” are related—but they are. Both words evolved from the French word “gentil,” which carried the sense of “noble.” At first “jaunty” was used, like “genteel,” for things aristocratic, but as the years went by people stopped using it that way. Today “jaunty” is used to describe things that are lively and perky rather than things that are aristocratic and elegant.