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 (shĭv′ə-rē′, shĭv′ə-rē′)
n. Midwestern & Western US
A noisy mock serenade for newlyweds. Also called regionally charivari, belling, horning, serenade.

[Alteration of charivari.]
Word History: Shivaree is the most common American regional form of charivari, a word of French origin meaning "a noisy mock serenade for newlyweds." In the past, shivarees were given to married couples who were thought to be mismatched or to people whose conduct was considered scandalous. The French term probably derives from the Late Latin word meaning "headache," carībaria, which in turn is from Greek karēbariā, a compound of karē, "head," and barus, "heavy." English shivaree, most likely borrowed from French traders and settlers along the Mississippi River, was well established in the United States by 1805. The word shivaree is especially common along and west of the Mississippi River. Its use thus forms a dialect boundary running north-south, dividing western usage from eastern. This is unusual in that most dialect boundaries run east-west, dividing the country into northern and southern dialect regions. Some regional equivalents are belling, used in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, and Michigan; horning, from upstate New York, northern Pennsylvania, and western New England; and serenade, a term used chiefly in the South Atlantic states.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


1. a discordant mock serenade to newlyweds, made with pans, kettles, etc
2. a confused noise; din
Also (esp dialect): charivari
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˌʃɪv əˈri)

n., v. -reed, -ree•ing. n.
1. a mock serenade with noisemakers given for a newly married couple; charivari.
2. an elaborate, noisy celebration.
3. to serenade with a shivaree.
[1835–45, Amer.; alter. of Mississippi Valley French, French charivari charivari]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.


- A mock serenade, it originally meant "headache" in its Latin form.
See also related terms for headache.
Farlex Trivia Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.shivaree - a noisy mock serenade (made by banging pans and kettles) to a newly married couple
serenade - a song characteristically played outside the house of a woman
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Shivaree: (a) opponent (b) stationary (c) noisy mock serenade (d) allusion 9.
From vivid memories of his grandparents, to the shivaree "hosted" by friends and neighbors, to raising kids and grandkids, to the kind of friendly (if ribald) ribbing that passes between men who've known each other all their lives, it's all in black and white on these pages.
At Caernarfon, below l-r: Zoe Gamble was selling these tasty biscuits; Lauren and Thomasine of Cimera circus; and Francois of Shivaree, Tregarth, cooking up tasty scallops.
Election Days regularly turned to violence and shivaree; one such extravaganza in Baltimore may have cost Edgar Allan Poe his life.
Toronto-based Voicebox: Opera in Concert has a distinguished history of Canadian premieres of rare repertoire, but also a commitment to Canadian works that has seen the company revive Timothy Sullivan's Florence: The Lady with the Tamp (presented 1995) and Dream Play (2004), Healey Willan's Dierdre (1997), John Beckwith's The Shivaree (2002) and Night Blooming Cereus (2003), Harry Somers' The Fool (2003) and Charles Wilson's The Summoning of Everyman (2004).
For example an 1802 charivari protesting the marriage of Augustin Boiton de Fougeres, a French royalist, to Eugenia Willcocks involved young men "dressed as Indians" who "kept up the 'shivaree'" for a total of four nights (B.
A popular local winter festival called Shivaree is the only large-scale event in Michigan that celebrates interpretation and conservation of lake sturgeon.
(5.) In the Midwest this popular ritual was known as a "shivaree." For the European and English origins of this ritual and its midwestern versions see Osterud, Bonds of Community, 109-10.
(An example: when Beckwith showed drafts of the scenario for The Shivaree, an opera whose action takes place on a couple's wedding night, to director Herman Geiger-Torel, the latter suggested the story should build to "several big climaxes." Beckwith sent these comments to the librettist.
Winning a fixed race forebodes a shivaree. Losing heralds bloodletting.
The shivaree that followed was a "football wedding," with doors open to all who entered and a buffet-style dinner.
This Judge Dredd suggestion is really nothing more than old-fashioned vigilantism, "shivaree" east of the Mississippi River a century ago.