Definition of FOLLY

FOLLY Noun and Adjective

Folly serves as both a noun and an adjective, depicting a lack of wisdom or a foolish action or idea. As a noun, it refers to a foolish or senseless act, decision, or behavior. As an adjective, it describes something characterized by foolishness or lack of good sense.

FOLLY as a noun

As a noun, folly represents an act or instance of foolishness or lack of judgment. It encompasses actions, decisions, or behaviors that are irrational, imprudent, or ill-advised. Examples of folly include reckless financial investments, impulsive decisions, or thoughtless actions that lead to negative consequences. The term emphasizes the foolishness or absurdity of the action, often implying a degree of regret or hindsight.

Examples of Folly: Historically, folly has been associated with architectural structures, such as ornamental buildings or decorative features that serve no practical purpose. These “follies” were often constructed for aesthetic or whimsical reasons rather than functional use, symbolizing extravagance or frivolity. In modern usage, the term extends beyond physical structures to encompass any action or idea deemed foolish or impractical.

FOLLY as an adjective

As an adjective, folly describes something characterized by foolishness or a lack of good sense. It denotes actions, decisions, or behaviors that are ill-conceived, imprudent, or irrational. For example, a “folly project” may refer to an undertaking marked by poor planning, unrealistic expectations, or a disregard for practical considerations. The adjective emphasizes the inherent foolishness or impracticality of the subject.

Historical Significance: The concept of folly has been explored in literature, philosophy, and psychology as a fundamental aspect of human behavior. Philosophers and writers have contemplated the nature of folly, its causes, and its consequences, often using it as a theme to explore themes of hubris, irrationality, and the human condition. From Shakespearean tragedies to contemporary novels, folly serves as a narrative device to illustrate the complexities of human nature and the pitfalls of unchecked ambition or arrogance.

Reflection and Learning: While folly often carries negative connotations, it can also serve as a source of reflection and learning. Recognizing one’s own folly or observing the folly of others can lead to personal growth, humility, and wisdom. By acknowledging past mistakes or errors in judgment, individuals can gain insight into their decision-making processes, develop greater self-awareness, and make more informed choices in the future.

In conclusion, folly as both a noun and an adjective denotes a lack of wisdom or good sense, encompassing foolish actions, decisions, or behaviors. Whether used to describe a specific act of imprudence or to characterize something as inherently foolish, the term emphasizes the irrationality or absurdity of the subject. While folly may lead to negative outcomes, it can also serve as a catalyst for reflection, learning, and personal growth, highlighting the importance of wisdom and prudence in navigating life’s challenges.

Examples of FOLLY in a sentence

FOLLY as a noun in sentence

  • Jumping into the investment without proper research proved to be a costly folly.
  • The decision to go hiking without adequate gear was considered a dangerous folly.
  • Building a house on a floodplain was seen as an act of folly given the region’s history of flooding.
  • His decision to quit his job on a whim turned out to be a moment of folly he regretted later.
  • The company’s decision to ignore customer feedback was seen as a strategic folly that led to declining sales.
  • Going against the advice of experts was seen as an act of folly that led to disastrous consequences.
  • It was clear in hindsight that entering into the agreement without proper legal counsel was a grave folly.
  • The collapse of the bridge was attributed to the folly of cutting corners during construction.

FOLLY as an adjective in sentence

  • The company’s folly decision to invest in risky ventures led to financial ruin.
  • His folly behavior during the meeting embarrassed his colleagues.
  • It was a folly mistake to trust the unreliable supplier.
  • The project’s folly approach resulted in missed deadlines and cost overruns.
  • Her folly decision to ignore the warning signs led to a series of unfortunate events.
  • The folly decision to ignore climate change warnings is putting future generations at risk.
  • The team’s folly strategy of relying solely on one source of revenue proved to be shortsighted.
  • He realized the folly decision of trying to fix the complex problem without seeking expert advice.

Origin of FOLLY

The term folly traces back to the Old French word “folie,” derived from the Latin “folia,” meaning “foolishness” or “madness.” Here’s the breakdown:

  • Folie (Old French): Referring to “foolishness” or “madness.”
  • Folia (Latin): Denoting “folly” or “foolishness.”

Therefore, folly originally described a state of being foolish or irrational. In modern usage, folly refers to acts, ideas, or behaviors that are considered lacking in good sense, wisdom, or judgment. It often implies a disregard for logic, reason, or prudence, leading to negative consequences or outcomes. Folly can manifest in various forms, such as foolish decisions, imprudent actions, or misguided beliefs. It is commonly associated with errors in judgment or understanding, highlighting human fallibility and the propensity for making mistakes.


  • Nonsense
  • Absurdity
  • Imprudence
  • Foolishness
  • Absurdity
  • Stupidity
  • Futility
  • Folly


  • Wisdom
  • Prudence
  • Sanity
  • Rationality
  • Sobriety
  • Sensibility
  • Soundness
  • Judiciousness


  • Fools
  • Folly-Prone
  • Follies
  • Foolish Acts
  • Senselessness
  • Folly-Stricken
  • Folly-Minded
  • Foolhardiness

🌐 🇬🇧 FOLLY in other languages

Terms of Use

Privacy & Cookies


Who We Are

Main Sections


Geographical Locations



Let´s Talk



® 2024