Happy as a Lark

Meaning of Idiom ‘Happy as a Lark’

To be happy as a lark means to be very happy, excited, delighted, etc. 1Kirkpatrick, Elizabeth M. The Wordsworth Dictionary of Idioms. Ware: Wordsworth, 1995.,2Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.

Usage

Happy as a lark can be used to describe happiness as a general characteristic but is often used to describe happiness in reaction to an event or to what one is doing.

Examples Of Use

“When Mary saw the carousel at the park, she was happy as a lark and rode it for hours.”

“It’s not like little Jane to be so morose. She’s usually as happy as a lark!”

Origin

Used since at least the first half of the 1800’s, the idiom happy as a lark is assumed to allude to the song of the lark, which to human ears seems quite beautiful, melodious, and happy.

There are many species of larks and their pleasing song and their frequent proximity to rural human habitation has made it a bird associated with beautiful birdsong and a subject of literature, such as Percy Bysshe Shelley’s poem To a Skylark and music, such as Tchaikovsky’s Song of the Lark. 3Wikipedia contributors. “Lark.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 17 Feb. 2018. Web. 6 Mar. 2018. Larks tend to sing very early in the morning, causing Shakespeare to write, in King Richard III, “Stir with the lark, gentle Norfolk.”

Listen to the song of the skylark (Alauda arvensis).

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Sources   [ + ]

1. Kirkpatrick, Elizabeth M. The Wordsworth Dictionary of Idioms. Ware: Wordsworth, 1995.
2. Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.
3. Wikipedia contributors. “Lark.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 17 Feb. 2018. Web. 6 Mar. 2018.