Meaning of bacchanal


A bacchanal is a crazed party with drunken revelry, ecstatic sexual experimentation, and wild music. In a nutshell, it is “sex, drugs, and rock-and-roll.”

Bacchus was the Roman god of wine, which loosened the chains of social restraints; and so, the name of Bacchantes’ hedonistic, pleasure-filled gatherings were named bacchanals. Who might be a modern-day Bacchus? Elvis Presley had bacchanalian charisma. Now, this bit of trivia might impress your friends: the song we know as the Can-Can is titled “Bacchanale,” from the opera Orpheus in the Underworld – that’s one hot steaming club jam going on down in Hades!

Definitions of bacchanal
  1. noun

    a wild gathering involving excessive drinking and promiscuity


    bacchanalia, debauch, debauchery, drunken revelry, orgy, riot, saturnalia

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    type of:

    revel, revelry

    unrestrained merrymaking

  2. noun

    a drunken reveller; a devotee of Bacchus



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    type of:

    buff, devotee, fan, lover

    an ardent follower and admirer

  3. noun

    someone who engages in drinking bouts


    bacchant, drunken reveler, drunken reveller

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    type of:

    drinker, imbiber, juicer, toper

    a person who drinks alcoholic beverages (especially to excess)

  4. adjective

    used of riotously drunken merrymaking


    bacchanalian, bacchic, carousing, orgiastic

    drunk, inebriated, intoxicated

    stupefied or excited by a chemical substance (especially alcohol)

Word Family

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