Jovial [jōvēəl] is a lovely word, one that I’ve come across quite a lot lately in my re-reading of A Christmas Carol. It makes me smile every time I see it there on the page–Mr. Fezziwig and the Ghost of Christmas Present both seem to have this adjective applied to them, I believe.
Jovial is a word that means “cheerful” or “friendly”. It’s a late 16th-century word from French, from the Latin word jovialis (“of Jupiter”), a reference to the supposed influence of that planet on those born under it.
It’s fitting, then, that this word makes me happy when I read it. 🙂