The Alternative English Dictionary

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Colourful extracts from Wiktionary. Slang, vulgarities, profanities, slurs, interjections, colloquialisms and more.


initialism: {{rfc-header}} {{en-noun}}
  1. (banking) initialism of automated teller machine or initialism of automatic teller machine
  2. (computing) initialism of w:Adobe Type Manager
  3. (pornography, vulgar) initialism of ass to mouth
  4. (telecommunications, electronics) initialism of asynchronous transfer mode
  5. (transport) initialism of advanced traffic management
  6. (transport) initialism of air traffic management
  7. (transport) initialism of available ton mile
Synonyms: cash machine, cashpoint, cash point, hole-in-the-wall
adverb: {{en-adv}}
  1. (Internet slang) initialism of at the moment
  • AMT, mat, Mat, Mat., tam, TAM, TMA
atomic wedgie
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US, slang) A prank in which a person's underpants are pulled up sharply from behind up to the shoulders or higher, in order to wedge the clothing uncomfortably between the person's buttocks.
    • 2011, E. H. Allen, The Divine Miracle: Dakota Evans and the Legend of the Great Blue Giant: Book One "...Brent just loves antagonizing his sister but he knows better than to mess with me after that atomic wedgie I gave him once,” Tanner said with a grin.“Yeah he was pulling his underwear out of his butt crack for at least a month,” Joshua said as he and Tanner giggled uncontrollably.
    • 2007, Sarah Mayberry, Hot For Him He shut his brother up with the simple expedient of giving him an atomic wedgie, Mandalor-family style. “You son of a bitch! I think you just ruptured a testicle,” Dom howled. “I thought you'd given up balls for Lent,” Leandro said
atom smasher
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) A particle accelerator.
atrocious etymology From Latin atrox, from ater. pronunciation
  • /əˈtɹəʊʃəs/
  • {{rhymes}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Frightful, evil, cruel or monstrous. examplePrisons have been the sites of atrocious mistreatment of prisoners.
  2. Offensive or heinous. {{rfex}}
  3. Very bad; abominable or disgusting.
    • 1898, Winston Churchill (novelist) , The Celebrity, 4 , “The Celebrity, by arts unknown, induced Mrs. Judge Short and two other ladies to call at Mohair on an afternoon when Mr. Cooke was trying a trotter on the track. The three returned wondering and charmed with Mrs. Cooke; they were sure she had had no hand in the furnishing of that atrocious house.”
    exampleTheir taste in clothes is just atrocious.
  • Nouns to which "atrocious" is often applied: crime, act, murder, condition, spelling, grammar.
related terms:
  • atrocity
attaboy Alternative forms: atta boy etymology The OED gives 'attaboy' as a "careless pronunciation" of "that's the boy!", though the more common expression is "that's a [good] boy!", which derives from the expressions "That's my [good] boy" which first appears in Shakespeare's Titus Andronicus. It has otherwise been suggested that attaboy goes back to the hunters’ language, in which boy acquired the meaning “hunted animal.” attaboy (or ataboy, as it is sometimes spelled, because no one knows the “right” spelling of this phrase) would go back to "a tout a boy!" ("a tout", a call to incite dogs). (Attaboy! Or, The Male-Intimate Affectionate Overtones Questions By Anatoly Liberman, December 13th, 2006) pronunciation
  • /ˈætəˌbɔɪ/
interjection: {{en-interj}}
  1. (idiomatic, colloquial) Used to show encouragement or approval to a boy or man. Attaboy! That's the way to hit a home run!
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A cry of "attaboy"; an accolade.
    • {{quote-news}}
attagal etymology Alteration of girl into gal, in attagirl.
interjection: {{en-interj}}
  1. (idiomatic, colloquial) alternative spelling of attagirl
attagirl Alternative forms: attagal, atta girl
interjection: {{en-interj}}
  1. (idiomatic, colloquial) Used to show encouragement or approval to a girl or woman. Female version of attaboy.
atta girl etymology Alteration of "that's a girl!" or "that's the girl!".
interjection: {{en-interj}}
  1. (idiomatic, colloquial) alternative spelling of attagirl
attention whore
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (derogatory, vulgar, idiomatic) An individual that routinely solicits attention through inappropriate tactics and provocation
Synonyms: drama queen
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (rare, vulgar) To seek attention through inappropriate means or to an excessive degree.
    • 2006, , "Peacock's perch gives Coulter place to crow", The Hollywood Reporter, 20 June 2006: Her [Ann Coulter's] toxicity is more about salesmanship than citizenship, more high-decibel attention whoring than true ideology.
    • {{seemoreCites}}
at the high port
prepositional phrase: {{en-prep phrase}}
  1. (idiomatic, military, of a weapon) held with two hands as in "port arms", but carried well above the head. The high port is often the position taught for running (at the double) or charging.
    • 1943, Francis Jackson, Passage to Tobruk: the diary of a Kiwi in the Middle East: I raced across the desert, rifle above my head at the high-port. A man screamed, and throwing up his hands, rolled head over heels. I jumped over him and kept on running.
    • 2004, Peter Godwin, Mukiwa: A White Boy in Africa: If you mistakenly referred to your rifle as a gun, you found yourself doubling around the parade ground with your rifle in one hand above your head at the high port, and your other hand clutching your balls. As you ran you had to shout: 'This is my rifle, this is my gun, this is for fighting, this is for fun.'
    • 2008, Angus Hyslop, The Plough, the Gun and the Glory: 'Place your rifle at the high port! That means above your head Mitchell!' James lifted the weapon and held over his head as ordered.
  2. (idiomatic, by extension) stick up; (of hair, etc) stand up at a marked angle
    • 1967, Philip Allfree, Warlords of Oman: I have seen no more romantic figure than Stewart Carter, his head and shoulders wrapped in a flaming red head-scarf, moustaches at the high port, crouched fanatically over the steering-wheel of a stripped-down Land Rover.
    • 1986, Nicholas Best, Tennis and the Masai Once, they disturbed a family of forest hog, which trotted off with tails at the high port; once a lone hyena, [...]
    • 1996, Derek Peter Franklin, A Pied Cloak: Memoirs of a Colonial Police Officer (Special Branch): We had just changed On another patrol Kinyua indicated that he could hear something in the undergrowth ahead. We had just changed places and I had assumed the lead position, when he thrust me to one side and stabbed with his shotgun a gigantic porcupine that was coming down the track at me with its bristles at the high port!
    • 2006, George MacDonald Fraser, Flashman on the March: Here he ran out of words, and drew himself up, beard at the high port, shaking his great head while he clasped my hand, and I meditated on the astonishing ease with which strong men of Victorian vintage could be buffaloed into incoherent embarrassment by the mere mention of feminine frailty.
  3. (idiomatic, by extension, of anything, not just a weapon) held in front of the body, especially in an authoritative or aggressive way
    • 1990, Gerald Haigh, Nipscratting? No thanks, in Equity and efficiency: school management in an international context, Lynn Davies (editor): We can all surely see, though, that there will be heads who will weep for joy at the challenges posed by LFM, which may yet provide for the apotheosis of those colleagues who want to see a full exercise book before issuing a new one. Calculators at the high port they will prowl their schools switching off lights, cutting pencils in half and pondering the cost-effectiveness of — as an ex-colonial head with whom I worked longed to do — deterring vandals by establishing a family of baboons in the school grounds.
    • 1991, Stanley Middleton, Beginning to end: Thomas Tring, emerging with violin in left hand and bow vertical at the high port in his right, looked about Clark's age, had a long head with thin untidy hair round a clear parting. His accompanist, two yards behind, was ruddy-faced with glasses [...]
    • 1996, Reginald Hill, Blood Sympathy The warden had spotted them. Mouth open in a predatory snarl which showed a metal tooth which it was rumoured actually grew there, she advanced towards them, her note-book held before her like a buckler, her pencil at the high port. The men turned and looked at her. That was all. Just looked.
  4. (idiomatic, slang, by extension) at once, quickly; unhesitatingly, vigorously.
    • 1981, Dan Davin, Selected stories: Eventually he went off, still bubbling with enthusiasm. When his motorbike was out of earshot I went to look for Smithy. He must have taken off smartly at the high port as soon as he saw Elmer but I ran him down in the end.
    • 1982, Roy Parsons, The summer book: a New Zealand miscellany: [...] So we thought we'd better hop our frames out of there at the high port.
    • 1989, André Dennison, J. R. T. Wood, The war diaries of André Dennison: [...] inimitable drivers had taken it into their heads to leave at the high-port when the firing started.
    • 1997, Ron Thomson, Mahohboh: No sooner had the shot been fired than they took off at the high port, racing hell bent for leather right in our direction.
  5. (idiomatic) Positioned ready for immediate use.
    • 1970, West coast review, Volumes 5-6 Two seconds later Charlie comes out with his hand at the high port, ready for shaking.
    • 1985, Punch, Volume 289: Among the other Americans was a bright, bird-like lady with her note-book at the high port and her biro uncapped and ready...
    • 1990, Gerald Haigh, Nipscratting? No thanks, in Equity and efficiency: school management in an international context, Lynn Davies (editor): We can all surely see, though, that there will be heads who will weep for joy at the challenges posed by LFM, which may yet provide for the apotheosis of those colleagues who want to see a full exercise book before issuing a new one. Calculators at the high port they will prowl their schools switching off lights, cutting pencils in half and pondering the cost-effectiveness of — as an ex-colonial head with whom I worked longed to do — deterring vandals by establishing a family of baboons in the school grounds.
    • 1996, Reginald Hill, Blood Sympathy The warden had spotted them. Mouth open in a predatory snarl which showed a metal tooth which it was rumoured actually grew there, she advanced towards them, her note-book held before her like a buckler, her pencil at the high port. The men turned and looked at her. That was all. Just looked.
Synonyms: (positioned ready for immediate use) at the ready
attic etymology From the practice of decorating the top storey of building façade in the Attic architectural style. pronunciation
  • /ˈætɪk/
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. The space, often unfinished and with sloped walls, directly below the roof in the uppermost part of a house or other building, generally used for storage or habitation. We went up to the attic to look for the boxes containing our childhood keepsakes.
  • tacit
atticky etymology attic + y
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (informal) Resembling an attic or some aspect of one.
    • 1922, Dorothy Canfield Fisher, Rough-hewn ...with its nice atticky smell that no other house in the world had! It just fitted all around you, when you went in the door...
    • 1998, Maeve Brennan, The Springs of Affection: Stories of Dublin She had no intention of giving up her flat, especially since her rent included the three little atticky rooms on the third floor, the top floor of the house...
    • 2008, Melissa J Delbridge, Family Bible You'd think it might hold the scent of smoke, or an atticky perfume of mouse and moth-wing.
Synonyms: atticlike
attitude-y Alternative forms: attitudey
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (informal) Showing a pointedly arrogant attitude.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (informal) Having a bold and possibly unfriendly attitude; sassy.
    • {{quote-news}}
attoparsec etymology atto + parsec
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (humorous) A unit of measure of 10−18 parsec, or about 3.085 centimetre (1.215 inch).
attorney etymology Old French atorné, aturné, atourné, masculine past participle of atourner ("to attorn", in the sense of "one appointed or constituted").''Oxford English Dictionary'' (1971), p. 553. pronunciation
  • {{audio}}
  • /əˈtɜː(ɹ)ni/
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US) A lawyer; one who advise or represent others in legal matter as a profession.
  2. An agent or representative authorize to act on someone else's behalf.
  • In the "agent" sense, the word is now used to refer to nonlawyers usually only in fixed phrases such as attorney-in-fact or power of attorney.
Synonyms: mouthpiece (slang), advocate
{{abbreviation-old}}: {{head}}
  1. (slang) Australian dollar
Synonyms: A$, AUD
Aufklärung etymology Borrowing from German Aufklärung.“[ ‖Aufklärung]” listed in the '''Oxford English Dictionary''' [2<sup>nd</sup> Ed.; 1989] pronunciation
  • (RP) {{enPR}}, /ˈaʊfklɛːʀʊŋ/,
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. The Enlightenment.
related terms:
  • Aufklärer
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (sometimes, pejorative) Illuminism; the aim, manner, spirit, etc. of the Aufklärer.
aunt etymology From Middle English aunte, from xno aunte, from Old French ante, from Latin amita. Displaced native Middle English modrie (from Old English mōdriġe; compare Old English ). pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /ɑ(ː)nt/ (in the Received Pronunciation of the UK; in Australia; in the US, New England and Virginia, where it is the most common pronunciation)
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
  • {{homophones}} (in some non-rhotic accents)
  • {{enPR}}, /ænt/ (in the northern UK; in Canada; in the US, where it is the most common pronunciation in all regions except New England and Virginia)[ The Dialect Survey] of US pronunciations
  • {{rhymes}}
  • {{homophones}}
  • {{audio}}
  • /ɒnt/ (in the Maritime provinces of Canada)
  • {{enPR}}, /ɔnt/ (in the US, primarily in New England)
  • /eɪnt/ (in the Southern US)
  • {{homophones}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A sister or sister-in-law of someone’s parent.
    • 2007, Nancy Eshelman, A Piece of My Mind: Columns from the Patriot-News, page 35: I mentioned another aunt, my late mother's sister, who's about the same age.
  2. (also great-aunt or grandaunt) A person's grandparent's sister or sister-in-law.
  3. (usually auntie) A grandmother.
  4. An affectionate term for a woman of an older generation than oneself, especially a friend of one's parents, by means of fictive kin.
  • (with regard to gender) uncle
  • (with regard to ancestry) niece, nephew
  • (sister of someone's father) paternal aunt
  • (sister of someone's mother) maternal aunt
  • tuna
Aunt Flo etymology Pun on flow and Flo(rence, ra, &c.).
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. (euphemism slang) A personification of the menstrual period or menstruation. Aunt Flo came to visit last night, that's why I was so ratty.
  • no-fault
aunt fucker Alternative forms: auntfucker
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (vulgar, rare) Motherfucker (generic term of abuse).
    • 1999, Timothy Jay, Why We Curse, p 240 And one has to wonder about the difference between “aunt fucker” and …
    • 2003, Fatha Jack, Re: We is all Africans, innit. Group: alt.religion.wicca Fuck off, racist. hes a missouri aunt fucker!
    • 2001, sumbeotch, Re: DEVILDOG AND HIS FLUNKIES Group: alt.elvis.king OH and take those kotex folding aunt fuckers with you ok?
    • 2011, J. P. Davidson, Planet Word So in Catholic Brazil you'll get references to the Holy Mother; in Asian cultures, where the family is honoured, you get outbursts like 'shitty grandma' or 'aunt fucker'.
coordinate terms:
  • unclefucker
Aunt Jane etymology Female equivalent of Uncle Tom.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (derogatory) A black woman who is obsequious servile to white authority.
Aunt Thomasina etymology Female equivalent of Uncle Tom.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (derogatory) A black woman who is obsequious servile to white authority.
Aussie {{wikipedia}} pronunciation
  • (AU) {{enPR}}, /ˈɒzi/
  • (US) {{enPR}}, /ˈɒsi/
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (colloquial) An Australian.
  2. (colloquial) An Australian Shepherd.
  3. (slang, finance) Australian dollar
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. (colloquial) Australia.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (chiefly, Australia, New Zealand, British, colloquial) Australian.
    • 1998, Gordon L. Steinbrook, Allies and Mates: An American Soldier with the Australians and New Zealanders in Vietnam 1966-1967, page 63, Most Aussie officers seemed this way to me; always cool, deliberate, and extremely rational in their decision making, a far cry from the American leadership I had seen during my first year in the army.
    • 2010, Veechi Curtis, Lynley Averis, Bookkeeping For Dummies, page 81, Here's something I learned the hard way: The very best time of year to start off with accounting software is the beginning of the financial year (1 July for most Aussie businesses, and 1 April for most Kiwi businesses).
    • 2011, John Wiley & Sons Inc, Wiley Trading Guide, Volume 2, page 153, For example, if you buy US dollars (USD) using Australian dollars (AUD) and the Aussie dollar falls, you can then sell your US dollars and you will have made money as you will have more Aussie dollars than you started with.
    • 2008, Lois Nicholls, Aussie, Actually, page 111, They′re the ‘Almost Aussies’ who embrace their new culture with a vengeance – some becoming more Aussie than Aussies.
    • 2008, Janet Fife-Yeomans, Heath: A Family's Tale, page 65, You couldn't get more Aussie than the cast he chose—or their cars. The goodies drive Holdens and the baddies cruise around in a big, grunting, chocolate-brown Monaro.
    • 2010, Quintin Jardine, Screen Savers, unnumbered page, ‘I'm a perfectionist, mate,’ he said, his accent becoming noticeably more Aussie, as it always did in private.
  • The term is occasionally used, mostly by non-Australians, to refer to the country of Australia (for example, “back in Aussie”). This usage is very rare amongst Australians, who are more likely to use the term Oz. Sporting chants, such as “Aussie! Aussie! Aussie!” and “Come on, Aussie, come on!”, refer to the person, rather than the country. (Perhaps confusingly, they are used when cheering the country would be appropriate).
Aussie battler
noun: {{en-noun}} {{wikipedia}}
  1. (AU, informal) An ordinary working-class Australian who persevere in the face of adversity.
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. (informal) Australia.
  • unassailed
Aussie rules
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) Australian rules football, the sport.
Austerian etymology {{blend}}.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (neologism, pejorative) A supporter of the Austrian School of economics, particularly the libertarian, anti-Keynesian school advocated by Ludwig von Mises.
Australia {{wikipedia}} etymology First attested 16th century, from Latin terra austrālis incōgnita, from auster. Used also in 1693 (quotation below). Popularised by Matthew Flinders in 1814 (quotation below). Distantly cognate to Austria – same Proto-Indo-European root, but via German where it retained the earlier sense of “east” rather than “south”. See also Terra Australis. pronunciation
  • (AU) /ɒˈstɹeɪl.jə/, /əˈstɹeɪl.jə/
  • (AU) /əˈstɹæɪ.ljə/, /əˈstɹæɪ.liː.ə/, /əˈstɹæɪ.jə/
  • {{audio}}
  • (Tasmanian) /əˈstɹɛ.liː.ə/
  • (RP) /ɒˈstɹeɪ.liː.ə/, /ɒˈstɹeɪ.li.jə/
  • (GenAm) /ɔˈstɹeɪ.li.ə/, /ɔˈstɹeɪl.jə/
  • (cot-caught) /ɑˈstɹeɪ.li.ə/, /ɑˈstɹeɪl.jə/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. A country in Oceania. Official name: Commonwealth of Australia.
    • 1693: translation of a French novel by Jacques Sadeur (believed to be a pen name of ) titled Les Aventures de Jacques Sadeur dans la Découverte et le Voiage de la Terre Australe published 1692, translation published in London in 1693. Quoted in The Australian Language by Sidney J. Baker, second edition, 1966, chapter XIX, section 1, pages 388-9. This is all that I can have a certain knowledge of as to that side of Australia ...
    • 1814, Matthew Flinders, A Voyage to Terra Australis, volume 1 (at Project Gutenberg) Had I permitted myself any innovation upon the original term, it would have been to convert it into AUSTRALIA; as being more agreeable to the ear, and an assimilation to the names of the other great portions of the earth.
  2. (geology) The continent of Australia-New Guinea. New Guinea and the intervening islands are also on the Australian tectonic plate and are thus geologically considered part of the continent.
Synonyms: (country) Aussieland (colloquial), land down under, New Holland (historial), Oz (colloquial), Terra Australis (historical), (continent) Meganesia, Sahul
  • Antipodes
related terms:
  • Austria
  • Austrasie
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. abbreviation of authentication
  2. abbreviation of authorization
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (informal, computing) To authenticate. You can't post messages on the site unless you're authed.
  • Utah
authoress etymology author + ess
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (dated, derogatory) A female author.
    • {{quote-magazine }}
Synonyms: authouress
  • author
  • arthouses, art houses
  • house rats
autie etymology Diminutive of autistic with -ie.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal, nonstandard, endearing) An autistic person; sometimes used in contrast with aspie, to denote a person who is on the autistic spectrum but not diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome.
    • 2001, Jerry Newport, Your Life is Not a Label We must enable nonverbal auties to communicate by independent typing on devices that talk for them.
    • 2005, Dinah Murray, Coming Out Asperger For auties whose meltdowns take a more physical form, even if all the frustration is directed against property rather than people...
autobio etymology Shortening.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) autobiography
autobiog etymology Shortening; compare biog.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) An autobiography.
autograt etymology Shortened auto + gratuity.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal, rare, neologism) A gratuity automatic added to a bill.
    • 1998, "hilary gorman", Opinions on tipping situation (on Internet newsgroup You should still get a good tip without the autograt if your customers are civilized people, and your work is good!
    • 2006, "Kevrob", ...and i won't eat at THAT place any more... (on Internet newsgroup rec.arts.sf.fandom) I'd also dislike the change to the "autograt", because mandatory service charges are usually subject to sales tax, while tips are not, so I'd actually wind up paying more, even if I would have tipped 20% anyway.
Synonyms: autogratuity
autohagiography etymology auto + hagiography
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. An autobiography of a saint.
  2. (pejorative) An autobiography that flatters the subject.
automobile {{wikipedia}} etymology From French automobile, from Ancient Greek αὐτός 〈autós〉 + French mobile, from Latin mobilis. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈɔ.tə.mə.biːl/
  • (US) /ˈɔ.tə.moʊ.ˌbil/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{hyphenation}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US, Canada) A type of vehicle designed to move on the ground under its own stored power and intended to carry a driver, a small number of additional passenger, and a very limited amount of other load. A car or motorcar.
    • {{quote-magazine}}
  • The word automobile usually implies a car with seating for perhaps four or five passengers.
  • A vehicle with more than six or seven seats is usually described as a limousine, minivan, van, SUV, bus, etc.
Synonyms: (passenger vehicle) auto, car, (British) motor, (British) motorcar, See also
coordinate terms:
  • truck, van, bus, SUV, minivan, station wagon, sedan, coupe, convertible, sports car, racecar; wagon, cart, trailer, tractor; airplane, boat, ship
related terms:
  • automatic
  • automotive
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (dated) To travel by automobile.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal, nonce) A desired device that would measure the extent of autophagy
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) An autorickshaw.
etymology 1 auto + speak
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) Thoughtless, automatic speech.
    • 1998, Michael Strain, Policy, leadership and professional knowledge in education If management is not quite as routinised as teaching, it still involves quite a lot of autospeak when what people say follows familiar pathways.
etymology 2 auto + speak
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US, informal) The jargon associated with motor vehicle.
    • 2007, Nury Vittachi, The Shanghai Union of Industrial Mystics (page 199) Honk, which was autospeak for `Get out of my way'.
    • {{quote-news}}
avast etymology From the Dutch hou vast. pronunciation
  • (GenAm) /əˈvæst/
  • {{rhymes}}
interjection: {{en-interj}}
  1. (nautical) hold fast!; desist!; stay!.
  2. (parody of pirate slang) listen!; pay attention!. Avast, ye landlubbers!
  • The form "avast, ye!" (as in "Avast, Hoisting!" or "Avast, this noise" or "Avast ye landlubbers!!") is often seen, but this is nonstandard.
  • "Avast hauling!" is (or was, in 1950) still commonly used in U.S. Navy deck operations.
avatar {{was wotd}} {{wikipedia}} Alternative forms: avatara (rare), Avator (obsolete) etymology 1784, Borrowing from Hindi अवतार or from Urdu اوتار 〈ạwtạr〉, both borrowed from Sanskrit अवतार 〈avatāra〉, a compound of अव 〈ava〉 and the vṛddhi-stem of the root तरति 〈tarati〉. In computing use, saw some use in 1980s videos games – 1985 online role-playing game by Lucasfilm Games (today LucasArts), by Chip Morningstar and Randy Farmer,Morabito, Margaret. "Enter the Online World of LucasFilm." Run Aug. 1986: 24-28 later versions of the series (following religious use in 1985 Ultima IV: Quest of the Avatar), and 1989 pen and paper role-playing game Shadowrun. Popularized by 1992 novel Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson.{{R:Online Etymology Dictionary}} pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˌæv.əˈtɑ/, /ˈæv.ə.tɑ/
  • (US) /ˈæv.ə.tɑɹ/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{hyphenation}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (Hinduism) the incarnation of a deity, particularly Vishnu.
  2. The physical embodiment of an idea or concept; a personification.
    • 1886, Robert Louis Stevenson, dedicatory letter to Kidnapped [contrasting the historical Alan Breac with his incarnation in the novel]. And honest Alan, who was a grim fire-eater in his day, has in this new avatar no more desperate purpose than to steal some young gentleman's attention from his Ovid...
  3. (computing or gaming) A digital representation or handle of a person or being; often, it can take on any of various forms, as a participant chooses. i.e. 3D, animated, photo, sketch of a person or a person's alter ego, sometimes used in a virtual world or virtual chat room.
    • 1992 Neal Stephenson, Snow Crash The people are pieces of software called avatars. They are the audiovisual bodies that people use to communicate with each other in the Metaverse.
    • {{quote-news}}
avenue etymology Borrowing from French avenue, from Old French avenue, feminine past participle of avenir, from Latin adveniō, from ad + veniō. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈæv.əˌnju/
  • (US) /ˈæv.əˌnu/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{audio}}
  • {{hyphenation}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A broad street, especially one bordered by trees ().
  2. A way or opening for entrance into a place; a passage by which a place may be reached; a way of approach or of exit.
  3. The principal walk or approach to a house which is withdrawn from the road, especially, such approach bordered on each side by trees; any broad passageway thus bordered.
  4. A method or means by which something may be accomplished. There are several avenues by which we can approach this problem.
    • {{quote-news}}
Sometimes used interchangeably with other terms such as street. When distinguished, an avenue is generally broad and tree-lined. Further, in many American cities laid out on a grid, notably Manhattan, streets run east-west, while avenues run north-south. In French traditionally used for routes between two places within a city, named for the destination (or formally where it is coming from), as in the archetypal Avenue des Champs-Elysées. This distinction is not observed in English, where names such as “Fifth Avenue” are common. Synonyms: (broad street) drive, boulevard, (broad street) av. , av , ave. , ave (abbreviation)
average {{wikipedia}} etymology From Old French avarie, from Old Italian avaria (which possibly from Arabic عوارية 〈ʿwạryẗ〉, from عوار 〈ʿwạr〉, from عور 〈ʿwr〉). pronunciation
  • {{audio}}
  • (US) {{enPR}}, {{enPR}}, /ˈævəɹɪdʒ/, /ˈævɹɪdʒ/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (legal, marine) Financial loss due to damage to transported goods; compensation for damage or loss. {{defdate}}
    • 2008, Filiberto Agusti, Beverley Earle, Richard Schaffer, Filiberto Agusti, Beverley Earle, International Business Law and Its Environment, page 219, Historically, the courts have allowed a general average claim only where the loss occurred as a result of the ship being in immediate peril.…The court awarded the carrier the general average claim. It noted that “a ship′s master should not be discouraged from taking timely action to avert a disaster,” and need not be in actual peril to claim general average.
  2. Customs duty or similar charge payable on transported goods.
  3. Proportional or equitable distribution of financial expense.
  4. (mathematics) The arithmetic mean.
    • {{quote-magazine}}
    The average of 10, 20 and 24 is (10 + 20 + 24)/3 = 18.
  5. (statistics) Any measure of central tendency, especially any mean, the median, or the mode.
  6. (sports) An indication of a player's ability calculate from his scoring record, etc. examplebatting average
  7. (UK, legal, obsolete) The service that a tenant owe his lord, to be done by the animals of the tenant, such as the transportation of wheat, turf, etc.
  8. (UK, in the plural) In the corn trade, the medial price of the several kinds of grain in the principal corn market.
  • (mathematics, statistics) The term average may refer to the statistical mean, median or mode of a batch, sample, or distribution, or sometimes any other measure of central tendency. Statisticians and responsible news sources are careful to use whichever of these specific terms is appropriate. In common usage, average refers to the arithmetic mean. It is, however, a common rhetorical trick to call the most favorable of mean, median and mode the "average" depending on the interpretation of a set of figures that the speaker or writer wants to promote.
coordinate terms:
  • (measure of central tendency) arithmetic mean, geometric mean, harmonic mean, mean, median, mode
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (not comparable) Constituting or relating to the average. The average age of the participants was 18.5.
  2. Neither very good nor very bad; rated somewhere in the middle of all others in the same category. I soon found I was only an average chess player.
  3. Typical.
    • 2002, Andy Turnbull, The Synthetic Beast: When Corporations Come to Life, [http//|most|very|extremely+average%22&hl=en&ei=v7jITufuL6fPmAXisMAG&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22more|most|very|extremely%20average%22&f=false page 12], We tend to think that exceptionally attractive men and women are outstanding but the fact is that they are more average than most.
    • 2004, Deirdre V. Lovecky, Different Minds: Gifted Children with AD/HD, Asperger Syndrome, and Other Learning Deficits, [http//|most|very|extremely+average%22&hl=en&ei=v7jITufuL6fPmAXisMAG&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22more|most|very|extremely%20average%22&f=false page 75], Things that never would occur to more average children, with and without AD/HD, will give these children nightmares.
    • 2009, Susan T. Fiske, Social Beings: Core Motives in Social Psychology, [http//|most|very|extremely+average%22&hl=en&ei=v7jITufuL6fPmAXisMAG&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22more|most|very|extremely%20average%22&f=false page 73], In other words, highly attractive people like highly attractive communicators and more average' people like more average communicators.
    The average family will not need the more expensive features of this product.
  4. (informal) Not outstanding, not good, banal; bad or poor.
    • 2002, Andy Slaven, Video Game Bible, 1985-2002, [http//|extremely+average%22&hl=en&ei=odjITu2kEqb3mAWr_qEK&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22very|extremely%20average%22&f=false page 228], The graphics, sound, and most everything else are all very average. However, the main thing that brings this game down are the controls - they feel very clumsy and awkward at times.
    • 2005, Brad Knight, Laci Peterson: The Whole Story: Laci, Scott, and Amber's Deadly Love Triangle, [http//|extremely+average%22+winona&hl=en&ei=ANrITqCDCKOaiAfizazqDw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&sqi=2&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22very|extremely%20average%22%20winona&f=false page 308], But what the vast majority of the populace doesn′t realise is the fact that he′s only on TV because he became famous from one case, Winona Ryder's, which, by the way, he lost because he′s only a very average attorney.
    • 2009, Carn Tiernan, On the Back of the Other Side, [http//|extremely+average%22&hl=en&ei=osjITqjtLOXAmQWOkoUm&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22very|extremely%20average%22&f=false page 62], In the piano stool there was a stack of music, mostly sentimental ballads intended to be sung by people with very average voices accompanied by not very competent pianists.
Synonyms: (constituting or relating to the average) mean; expectation (colloquial), (neither very good nor very bad) mediocre, medium, middle-rank, middling, unremarkable, so-so, comme ci comme ça, (typical) conventional, normal, regular, standard, typical, usual, bog-standard (slang), (not outstanding, not good; bad or poor) ordinary, uninspiring
  • (neither very good nor very bad) extraordinary
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive, informal) To compute the arithmetic mean of. If you average 10, 20 and 24, you get 18.
  2. Over a period of time or across members of a population, to have or generate a mean value of. The daily high temperature last month averaged 15°C.
  3. To divide among a number, according to a given proportion. to average a loss
  4. To be, generally or on average.
    • 1872 Elliott Coues, Key to North American Birds Gulls average much larger than terns, with stouter build …
average Joe
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US, informal) alternative form of Joe Average A typical, average person.
  • Joe Average
aviation cruiser
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (archaic) an aircraft carrier
  2. (dated) a helicopter carrier
  3. (euphemistic) a Soviet euphemism for aircraft carrier
  4. an aircraft carrier with heavy armaments typically found on a cruiser
  5. (informal) a cruiser with an air squadron
awaken pronunciation
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology From awake + en.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To cause to become awake. She awakened him by ringing the bell.
  2. (transitive) To cause to become conscious. How to awaken your brain? How to awaken your entrepreneurial spirit? We hope to awaken your interest in our programme.
  3. (intransitive) To stop sleep. Each morning he awakens with a smile in his face.
Synonyms: (intransitive, to stop sleeping) awake, stir
  • (stop sleeping) fall asleep
awesomazing etymology {{blend}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (slang) amazing
Synonyms: amazeballs
awesome {{wikipedia}} etymology Early Modern English 1590-1600, from awe + some. Compare Old English eġeful. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈɔːsəm/
  • (US) /ˈɔs.əm/
  • (cot-caught) /ˈɑs.əm/
  • {{audio}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Causing awe or terror; inspiring wonder or excitement. The waterfall in the middle of the rainforest was an awesome sight. The tsunami was awesome in its destructive power.
  2. (colloquial) Excellent, exciting, remarkable. That was awesome! Awesome, dude!
The oldest meaning of "awesome" is "something which inspires awe", but the word is also a common slang expression in English, originally from America. As the original meaning of awesome has become somewhat antiquated in general use, the term awe-inspiring is now generally used for the same meaning. Synonyms: (causing awe or terror) see , (excellent) excellent, super, phenomenal, fantastic, terrific; wicked, bang-up, cool, sweet (slang or informal); chur, cher (New Zealand)
related terms:
  • awe-inspiring
  • awful
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (Internet slang) The quality, state, or essence of being awesome or cool; awesomeness.
    • 2011, Gwen Hayes, Let Me Call You Sweetheart, Samhain Publishing, Ltd. (2011), ISBN 9781609284619, page 6: Plus, her patent leather boots were made of awesome. They made her legs look longer and leaner.
    • 2011, Kevin Seccia, Punching Tom Hanks: Dropkicking Gorillas and Pummeling Zombified Ex-Presidents—A Guide to Beating Up Anything, St. Martin's Press (2011), ISBN 9780312643744, page 189: Swayze, of course, is the being of pure awesome who has by now conquered all of Heaven.
    • 2013, Carrie Jones, Captivate, Bloomsbury (2010), ISBN 9781599903422, page 150: “Your grandmother,” he mumbles into my hair as we cuddle on the couch, “is made of awesome.”
    • {{seemoreCites}}
Synonyms: awesome sauce (Internet slang)
  • fail (slang), weaksauce (slang)
awesome sauce Alternative forms: awesome-sauce, awesomesauce etymology awesome + sauce Possibly originated in this Strong Bad cartoon. {{etystub}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. Used other than as an idiom: awesome, sauce
    • 2005, Cary Neff, Conscious Cuisine, page 242 The combination of spices and seasonings creates an awesome sauce or marinade for chicken, seafood, and beef.
  2. (Internet slang) The essence of awesomeness.
  3. (Internet slang) Something which is awesome, cool or spectacular.
Synonyms: awesome (Internet slang)
  • fail (slang), weaksauce (slang), pitiful (slang)
awful Alternative forms: awfull (archaic) etymology From awe + ful. pronunciation
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Oppressing with fear or horror; appalling, terrible.
  2. (now rare) Inspiring awe; filling with profound reverence or respect; profoundly impressive.
    • {{RQ:Flr Mntgn Essays}}, I.56: God ought not to be commixed in our actions, but with awful reverence, and an attention full of honour and respect.
    • 1819, Lord Byron, Don Juan, II.143: And then she stopped, and stood as if in awe / (For sleep is awful){{nb...}}.
  3. Struck or filled with awe.
  4. (obsolete) Terror-stricken.
  5. Worshipful; reverential; law-abiding.
  6. Exceedingly great; usually applied intensively. an awful bonnet I have learnt an awful amount today.
  7. Very bad. My socks smell awful.
  • Nouns to which "awful" is often applied: day, truth, time, place, moment, mess, night, news, state, situation, smell, thought, person, pain, movie, consequence, crime, fate, death, tragedy, man, event, disease, story, condition, mistake, taste, picture, year, calamity, doom, film, catastrophe, secret, performance, storm, end, week, shape, choice.
Synonyms: See also
adverb: {{en-adv}}
  1. (colloquial) Very, extremely; as, an awful big house.
a whole 'nother
determiner: {{en-det}}
  1. (informal, proscribed) alternative form of a whole nother
    • 2003, , as quoted in Michael W. Dean, $30 Music School, Thomson Course Technology, page 457, ISBN 1592001718: The problem is that when you physically try to impede my progress—then it moves up to a whole ’nother level that you probably can’t handle me on.
a whole nother Alternative forms: a whole 'nother etymology Insertion of whole into another by tmesis.
determiner: {{en-det}}
  1. (informal, proscribed) An entirely different; an intensified version of another.
    • 1890, Mary Louisa Molesworth, The Mysterious Guide, in the collection, The Story of a Spring Morning, p. 315. "I don't know what we shall do if we have to be a whole 'nother day in the house and in the dark."
    • 1976, Clarence "Fuzzy" Haskins, A Whole Nother Thang, album title. Quoted in Wikipedia .
    • 1979, Micheal Ende, The Neverending Story, p53, a Standard American English Translation
    • 1998, Gayl Jones, The Healing, p18 But that's a whole nother story.
    • 2001, Thulani Davis, 1959, p282 It's a whole nother bunch of folks over beyond the trees 'cross the tracks.
    • 2003, , as quoted in Michael W. Dean, $30 Music School, Thomson Course Technology, page 457, ISBN 1592001718 The problem is that when you physically try to impede my progress—then it moves up to a whole 'nother level that you probably can't handle me on.
    • 2005, Margo Lanagan, Rite of Spring, in Gavin J. Grant, Ellen Datlow, & Kelly Link, The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror, p19 A lazy blueness, from a whole nother age, is spread all above me.
awk etymology From Old Norse ǫfugr, ǫfigr, afigr ( > Danish avet, Swedish avig), from Proto-Germanic{{R:Online Etymology Dictionary|awkward}}. Cognate with German äbich, Gothic 𐌹𐌱𐌿𐌺𐍃 〈𐌹𐌱𐌿𐌺𐍃〉[ Germanic cognates] in [[:w:de:Deutsches Wörterbuch|Deutsches Wörterbuch]]. Akin to Gothic अपाच् 〈apāc〉 {{R:Webster 1913|awk}}. Compare dialect Danish ave, Icelandic öfga. pronunciation
  • (RP) /ɔːk/
  • (US) /ɔːk/
  • (US) (cot-caught) /ɑːk/
  • {{homophones}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (obsolete) Odd; out of order; perverse.
  2. (obsolete) Wrong, or not commonly used; clumsy; sinister; as, the awk end of a rod (the butt end). {{rfquotek}}
  3. (obsolete, UK, dialect) Clumsy in performance or manners; unhandy; not dexterous; awkward.
  4. (US slang, of a situation) Awkward; uncomfortable.
adverb: {{en-adv}}
  1. (obsolete) Perversely; in the wrong way.
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. (computing) A Unix scripting language or the command line interface itself.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (usually attributive, computing) Code written in or skill in using the awk language. I used C, Perl, the Bourne shell, and some awk and tcl to implement these projects.
  • kaw, Kwa
awkweird etymology {{blend}}
adjective: {{head}}
  1. (rare slang) Awkward and weird.
    • {{ante}} , “Nanny, Palmares and the Caribbean Maroon Connexion”, quoted in Jeanne Christensen, “A Language of Myth”, chapter 5 of Annie Paul (editor), Caribbean Culture: Soundings on Kamau Brathwaite, University of the West Indies Press (2007), ISBN 9789766401504, page 119: Nanny was buttockicized (& that the word is awkWEIRD and ungainly is no accident) because she was black & therefore how could she possibly be a leader …
    • 2001 August 19, “TheCycoONE” (username), “Re: Help the AIF community!”, in, Usenet: Maybe I'm playing the wrong games, or maybe it's because I've become so use{{SIC}} to that anything else seems 'awkweird'.
    • 2005, September 26, “Mad Dog” (username), “Re: My big day”, in rec.climbing, Usenet: Sure, Seneca 10s will probably feel stiffer than Jacks Canyon 10s but those are apples and orangutans. Old 8s and 9s can be plain old awkweird and hard, respectively.
awning etymology 1615-25 (nautical sense only); from *awn + ing, reduction of Middle French auvans, from Old French anvant (1180), from Gaulish *andebannā (compare Occitan ambans), from of *ande- (compare Welsh an-, Old Irish ind-) + *bandā (compare Welsh ban, Irish beann). pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈɔːnɪŋ/
  • (US) /ˈɔːnɪŋ/, /ˈɑːnɪŋ/
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A roof cover, usually of canvas, extended over or before any place as a shelter from the sun, rain, or wind.
  2. (nautical) That part of the poop deck which is continued forward beyond the bulkhead of the cabin.
  • waning
AWOL Alternative forms: awol, a.w.o.l., A.W.O.L. etymology Acronym, originally used in the United States military, of .
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (military and generic) Absent without leave (permission). The Army had a lot of AWOL soldiers.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (military) Absence without proper authority from the properly appoint place of duty, or from unit, organization, or other place of duty at which one is required to be at the time prescribed.
  2. (military) A person who holds AWOL status.
  3. (generic) Somebody who is absent without permission.
  4. (figuratively) Someone or something missing.
  • alow
aww yeah
interjection: {{en-interj}}
  1. (informal, slang) an exclamation of excitement or joy Aww yeah, I got a new video game!
Synonyms: (exclamation of excitement) oh yeah
axe {{wikipedia}}
etymology 1 From Middle English, from Old English æx, from Proto-Germanic *akwisī, probably from a Proto-Indo-European *h₂egʷs-ih₂- 〈*h₂egʷs-ih₂-〉, from *h₂eḱ- 〈*h₂eḱ-〉. Compare German Axt, Danish økse, Icelandic öxi, and also Latin ascia. pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /æks/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
Alternative forms: ax (largely US)
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A tool for fell trees or chop wood etc. consisting of a heavy head flatten to a blade on one side, and a handle attached to it.
  2. An ancient weapon consisting of a head that has one or two blade and a long handle.
  3. (informal) A dismissal or rejection. His girlfriend/boss/schoolmaster gave him the axe.
    • 1975, Bob Dylan, Tangled Up in Blue I had a job in the great North Woods Workin' as a cook for a spell. But I never did like it all that much And one day the axe just fell.
  4. (slang, music) A gigging musician's particular instrument, especially a guitar in rock music or a saxophone in jazz.
  5. (finance) A directional position or interest, by a dealer in a financial market – if one wishes to unload stock, one is “axed to sell” or “has an axe”.[ Shedding the correlation ‘axe’], Risk magazine Derived from “have an axe to grind”, which is also used.
In the United States, this spelling is often used to distinguish the weapon from the tool, though some simply don't use the "ax" spelling at all, and only use "axe". Synonyms: (dismissal or rejection (informal)) chop, pink slip, sack, boot
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To fell or chop with an axe.
  2. (transitive) To terminate or reduce tremendously in a rough or ruthless manner. The government announced its plans to axe public spending. The broadcaster axed the series because far less people than expected watched it.
  3. (transitive) To lay off: to terminate a person's employment He got axed in the last round of firings.
Synonyms: (lay off) fire, lay off, downsize
etymology 2 Alternative forms: ax (US)
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (archaic) The axle of a wheel.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To furnish with an axle.
etymology 3
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (obsolete or dialectal) alternative form of ask
    • 1395, John Wycliffe, trans. Bible, 1 Corinthis 14:35: But if thei wolen ony thing lerne, at home axe thei her hosebondis; for it is foule thing to a womman to speke in chirche.
    • 1526, William Tyndale, trans. Bible, Luke IIi: And the people axed hym, sayinge: What shall we do then.
axeman Alternative forms: axman etymology axe + man. Interestingly, the "sax" part of saxophone, whilst in the general sense comes from the surname of its maker, ultimately goes back to sax, meaning a bladed weapon. The surname of Adolphe Sax is a variant of Sachs, which means "Saxon". Saxon ultimately goes back to the same root as sax.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A man who wield an axe.
  2. (informal, music) A musician who plays a guitar or saxophone.
    • 1981, Kurt Loder, "Rolling Stone ," Anchorage Daily News / King Features Syndicate, 18 June, p. G6: Ex-Aerosmith axeman Joe Perry has finished recording his first solo effort, "I've Got the Rock 'n' Rolls Again."
axe wound
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (vulgar, slang) Vulva.
    • 2001, "Nunnaya Bidniz", Re: I give up!! (on newsgroup I'd love to shove my love pump into her axe wound. Only thing is, I bet she wouldn't mentally be there, cuz she'd be thinking how fat and ugly she looked naked and all.
    • 2008, "Beav", Re: ot: Christmas Lights On Houses (on newsgroup Have you ever tried waxing your armpits? … I don't think my missus would welcome a wax attack on her axe wound
    • 2012, Damon Beesley, ‎Iain Morris, The Inbetweeners Scriptbook (page 562) Are you saying she only likes it in her axe wound?
Synonyms: See also .
axiomatic etymology From Ancient Greek ἀξιωματικός 〈axiōmatikós〉, in turn from ἀξίωμα 〈axíōma〉
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Evident without proof or argument.
    • 1932, , Brave New World: The students nodded, emphatically agreeing with a statement which upwards of sixty-two thousand repetitions in the dark had made them accept, not merely as true, but as axiomatic, self-evident, utterly indisputable.
    • 1984, , Welsh v. Wisconsin, United States Supreme Court (66 U.S. 740, 748) It is axiomatic that the "physical entry of the home is the chief evil against which the wording of the Fourth Amendment is directed."
  2. Of or pertaining to an axiom.
  3. (informal) Obvious.
Synonyms: axiomatical, self-evident
related terms:
  • axiomatize
  • axiomatization
ayo pronunciation
  • /eɪoʊ/
etymology 1 {{rfe}}
interjection: {{en-interj}}
  1. (AAVE, informal) A greeting.
    • Cracked Dreams, page 73, Michael Daniel Baptiste, 2004, “"Ayo, Red. It's the homie Spits on the jack for you, blood." "Ayo, homeboy," said Red as he excitedly picked up the telephone receiver. "What's up, fool?"”
    • In Love with a Thug, page 38, Reginald L. Hall, 2007, ““Ayo, wassup, girl,” he said to Keisha as he continued to walk toward the back area where I stood. ... “Ayo, wassup, playa?”
    • I've Got to Make It to Heaven for Going Through Hell: Part 1, page 39, Tony J. Ward, Jr., 2007, Ayo Toine, you think they'd put me down?”
    • Christmas in the Hood, page 289, Nikki Turner, 2007, “"Ayo, fam, you a'ight down there?" Victorious's cell mate asked.”
    • Resurrection, page 106, Treasure Hernandez, 2008, “"Ayo, ma, where you going?" a dude asked her as she walked by him.”
    • The Trophy Wife, page 103, Ashley JaQuavis, 2008, “"Ayo, Kalil!" a man's voice said from amidst the crowd. Kalil looked up and saw his lil' man, Peanut, distributing packets of heroin and taking money from the fiends.”
    • Somethin' to Think about, page 197, R Green Damon, 2010, “"Ayo, Cee, listen to this shit here," said Matt, passing him his cell.”
Synonyms: (greeting) hey, hi, yo
etymology 2 From Yoruba
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (West African English) A strategy game.
Synonyms: (strategy game) oware, awari
ayoo pronunciation {{rfp}}
interjection: {{en-interj}}
  1. (slang) alternative form of ayo
Ayrab pronunciation
  • /ˈeɪ.ɹæb/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US, dialect or derogatory) Arab
    • 1991, Paul Mann, The traitor's contract That's what I think of fuckin' Ayrabs. How's the old man takin' it?
    • 2005, Abraham Rothberg, The Holy Warriors They all Muslims, and they don' wanna see a fuck-up like them Ayrabs who blew up the Trade Center gittin' caught.
  • abray
ay up me duck
phrase: {{head}}
  1. (UK dialect, chiefly, Midlands, informal) A generic greeting.
Azalean etymology azalea + an
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) A fan of the Australian rapper Iggy Azalea.
    • 2013, "Urban And R&B News With Cyclone", The Music, Number 2, 21 August 2013, page 60: Azaleans supposedly should expect the rapper's album, The New Classic, next month via Island Def Jam {{…}}
    • 2013, Jennifer Lynn, "A Life in Colour", Scotcampus, Issue 107, September 2013, page 7: "I'm excited about them all as a body of work. I think, after hearing my album, my Azaleans [Iggy's army of fans] and I will feel like close friends."
    • 2013, Deanne Ball, "The Naked Truth: Has Nudity in Fashion Gone Too Far?", e2, Issue 268, 25 November 2013, page 31: The cover, featuring an unusually modestly dressed Iggy Azalea, could easily fool any unsuspecting 'Azalean' into thinking that Pop is just another one of those celebtastic lifestyle magazines we're all guilty of buying from time to time {{…}}
    • {{seemoreCites}}
Azeri {{wikipedia}} {{interwiktionary}} etymology Either from Turkish azerî.''Oxford Dictionary of English'', edited by Angus Stevenson, third edition (2010; ISBN 978-0-19-957112-3
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A person from Azerbaijan or of Azerbaijani descent.
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. The Southern Turkic language of Azerbaijan.
Synonyms: (language) Azerbaijani, Azeri Turkic, Azeri Turkish
  • zaire, Zaire, zaïre
Azkal etymology Stylized from Tagalog askal. The term came into use in 2005, months before the Southeast Asian Games in the Philippines.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) A member of the
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (AAVE, slang) ass; backside
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (childish) A lamb or sheep
  2. Someone who is submissive, especially a husband or boyfriend
bab etymology {{clipping}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (UK, informal) Baby
Synonyms: See
babalaas etymology From Afrikaans, from Zulu i-bhabhalazi
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (South Africa, slang) A very bad hangover.
Alternative forms: babbelas
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (South Africa, slang) hangover
Alternative forms: babalaas
babber pronunciation
  • /ˈbæbə(ɹ)/
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (UK, chiefly, Bristol, informal) Baby
    • {{quote-web }} That babber of mine has been starting to talk lately and this morning when he saw me he said "da da da" very clearly! Proud moment.
  2. (UK, chiefly, Bristol, informal) Friend
    • {{quote-book }}
Synonyms: (baby) See , (friend) See
babe etymology From Middle English babe, perhaps a variant of earlier baban or representing Old English *baba, from Proto-Germanic *babô, reduplicated variant of *ba-, *bō-, related to ofs bobba, Swedish dialectal babbe, Old High German Babo, see boy. Otherwise, origin obscure. Compare mama, dada, papa. Welsh baban, believed by Skeat to be a mutated from maban diminutive of mab ("son"), is probably rather a borrowing from the English. Whitney, ''The Century dictionary and cylcopedia'', babe. Cognate also with English bub. pronunciation
  • /beɪb/, {{enPR}}
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (literary or poetic) A baby or infant; a very young human or animal. These events came to pass when he was but a babe.
  2. (slang) An attractive person, especially a young woman. She's a real babe!
  3. Darling term of endearment. Hey, babe, how's about you and me getting together?
  • {{seeCites}}
Synonyms: (infant) baby, child, infant, (attractive person)
  • (woman) hottie, doll, fox
  • See:
, (woman) hottie, doll, fox, See: , (darling) darling, dear, love, sweetheart
related terms:
  • baby
  • abbe, abbé
babealicious Alternative forms: babelicious etymology babe + licious
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (informal) Sexually attractive, like a babe.
    • 2001, Elizabeth Lenhard, Constance M Burge, Soul of the Bride "So much for my big after-the-shoot plans with Nikos," Phoebe said morosely, poking at her honey's babealicious but inert body.
    • 2004, Carrie Gerlach, Carrie Cecil, Emily's reasons why not I look back at the babealicious guy and he's smiling at me, giving me a knowing nod.
    • 2005, Curt Sampson, The Lost Masters: grace and disgrace in '68 But the best proof of the pleasing side of his personality was how he smiled and talked his way into the arms of a babealicious TWA flight attendant...
    • 2007, David Steinberg, The Book of David … an international scouting trip to find babealicious racks for the SI swimsuit issue …
Synonyms: foxy, sexy
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (South Africa, slang) A hangover.
babe magnet
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (chiefly, North America, idiomatic, slang) A person, especially a man, to whom women are attract.
    • 2003 Nov. 13, The New Yorker: Donald Rumsfeld had become a sex symbol. She observed that he was called a “virtual rock star” on CNN, a “babe magnet” on Fox, and “Rumstud” by the president.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (British, slang) Caning the backside profusely, an abusive initiation ritual to which trainee soldiers are subjected.
  2. (vulgar, sex) An obscene sexual act by which the rectum of a person prolapses due to excessive anal sex.
verb: {{head}}
  1. present participle of baboon
baby etymology From Middle English babee, babi, from babe, equivalent to babe + y. pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /ˈbeɪbi/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A very young human, particularly from birth to a couple of years old or until walking is fully mastered.
  2. Any very young animal, especially a vertebrate; many species have specific names for their babies, such as kitten for the babies of cat, puppies for the babies of dog, and chick for the babies of bird. See for more.
  3. Unborn young; a fetus. When is your baby due?
  4. A person who is immature or infantile. Stand up for yourself - don't be such a baby!
  5. A term of endearment for a girlfriend or boyfriend or spouse.
  6. (informal) A form of address to a man or a woman considered to be attractive. Hey baby, what are you doing later?
  7. A pet project or responsibility. The annual report has been my baby since September.
  8. The lastborn of a family.
  9. An affectionate term for anything. See my new car here? I can't wait to take this baby for a drive.
  10. (archaic) A small image of an infant; a doll.
Synonyms: (young human being) babe, babby, babbie, infant, (immature or infantile person) big baby, (term of endearment) love
adjective: {{en-adj}} (used only before the noun)
  1. Of a child: very young; of the age when he or she would be termed a baby or infant. a baby boy
  2. Of an animal: young. a baby elephant
  3. Intended for babies. baby clothes
  4. (of vegetables, etc.) Picked when small and immature (as in baby corn, baby potatoes).
When referring to a human baby (as per noun sense 1 above) the usual practice is to treat 'human' as the adjective and 'baby' as the noun. Synonyms: (very young, of a child) little, (intended for babies) baby's
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To coddle; to pamper somebody like an infant.
related terms:
  • babe
  • Abby
baby bat
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) A fledgling member of the goth subculture.
    • 2004, Pete Hautman, Sweetblood "Hey there, baby bat." Now I look. It's Weevil, the tall, orange-eyelashed, snakebite-swilling goth.
    • 2009, Sascha Illyvich, The Gift of Her Submission (page 5) Casey wore a black dress that fit her body to a T. … Sheʹd always wanted to go baby bat Goth, here was her chance.
    • 2011, Lauren Rosewarne, Part-Time Perverts: Sex, Pop Culture, and Kink Management (page 128) When used as a criticism, baby bats are accused of not truly understanding the subculture's music or cinema …
related terms:
  • batcaver
baby batter
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, vulgar) semen
    • 2009, 1001 Ways to Make Money If You Dare (ed. Trent Hamm), Adams Business (2009), ISBN 9781598698855, page 48: If the idea of a kid who shares genes with you running around somewhere doesn't freak you out, then by all means, sell your baby batter to a sperm bank.
Synonyms: See also .
Baby Bell
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US, telecommunication, informal) Any of the Regional Bell Operating Company resulting from the division of AT&T Corporation into a number of smaller companies in the 1980s as part of an antitrust agreement.
related terms:
  • Ma Bell
baby bottle
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A bottle equipped with a teat, used for feeding infants.
Synonyms: feeding bottle
baby brain
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) A state in which a new mother is forgetful, absentminded, or easily distracted.
    • 2005, Marc Weissbluth, Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child, Ballantine Books (2005), ISBN 0345486455, page xiii: Shortly after the birth, you may have “baby brain” and be unable to concentrate, focus, or develop a plan of action because you are so sleep-deprived.
    • 2013, Lauren Blakely, Trophy Husband, unnumbered page: “I do that sometimes too,” Amber says. “Forget stuff. I think it's because I have baby brain right now.”
    • 2013, Michelle Douglas, First Comes Baby, in First Comes Baby/The Loner's Guarded Heart omnibus, Harlequin (2013), ISBN 9780373742431, page 180: She might have baby brain and crazy hormones at the moment, but she'd better not forget that fact—not for a single, solitary moment.
Synonyms: mommy brain, momnesia
baby bump
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) visible signs of pregnancy, noticeable abdominal swelling in a pregnant woman.
  • Frequently used in tabloid coverage of celebrities.
babycakes etymology From baby + cakes.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) Term of endearment for a young woman.
baby daddy Alternative forms: baby-daddy etymology (General American would be baby's daddy) 1990s, popularized 2000s; compare baby mama.[ "What did Joe Louis have to tell us about Tina Fey?"] on ''Language Log'', December 10, 2008 Possibly from or influenced by same term in Jamaican English, from Jamaican Creole English baby-father,[ Where Do "Baby-Daddies" Come From? The origins of the phrase.] by Julia Turner, Slate, posted Sunday, May 7, 2006. alternatively due simply to grammatical similarities between AAVE and Jamaican Creole English.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, US) Father of child in common, particularly unmarried.
    • 2004, Michelle Obama, Senate victory speech, November 2, 2004:“[ America Votes 2004]”, ''CNN,'' November 2, 2004 My baby’s daddy, [sic] Barack Obama.
    • 2009, Stacye Branch M Msc, It's All in How You Look at It: Thoughts and Questions About Life, page 191 The baby daddy many of us at one point or another have or will be in a relationship with someone who has a child or children, and with that child or children comes another parent.
    • 2011, Michael Cornwall, Ticklenotes: More Voices from Cube Village, page 44 “I'm so glad I only have one baby daddy.” “F'really.” “I feel sorry for those girls with more than one.”
    • 2012, Aaron Peckham, Urban Dictionary: Freshest Street Slang Defined, page 16 The father of your child, whom you did not marry, and with whom you are not currently involved. That man isn't my boyfriend; he's my baby daddy.
As with baby mama, contentious usage – sometimes used neutrally as a casual term, regardless of marriage status, particularly in the tabloid press, or as a term of endearment, as in Obama quote above. Often considered pejorative, particularly if applied to unmarried black parents – if used by one parent of the other, can imply “child in common but no meaningful relationship”, while if used by outsiders, can imply disapproval of children born out of wedlock; see .“[ Was It a Slur?]”, by Tobin Harshaw, ''New York Times,'' June 12, 2008 More formal variants include “baby’s daddy” and “baby’s father”; in formal usage “father of one’s child” is preferred.
related terms:
  • baby mama
baby dick
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, vulgar) An extremely small penis
    • 2010, Michael Adams, Showgirls, Teen Wolves, and Astro Zombies: A Film Critic's Year-Long Quest to Find the Worst Movie Ever Made, page 244 It's weird that her on-screen boyfriend, Simon Rex, became her real-life man-bag because in the film she sets her dog to fellating his “babydick” and he romances her with, “My balls miss your chin.”
    • 2006, Janet Fitch, Paint it Black: A Novel Michael at four or five, naked in a hammock, reading a book, not a kid's book, something hardbound, and absently fondling his baby dick.
    • 2006, Bomani Shuru, Something About a Woman Whereas his dick was small-almost invisible-his manly voice was huge and powerful! That was the thing. He could have left his baby-dick home and brought the larynx to the orgy and that would've been all good.
  2. (slang, vulgar) A man with an extremely small penis, usually used as a disparaging form of address
baby duck syndrome {{wikipedia}} etymology From the tendency of young duck or other birds to imprint on the first thing they see.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (humorous) The tendency of computer users to always think the system (software or usage paradigm) they originally started using is better.
babyface etymology From baby + face.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, professional wrestling) A face (heroic character).
    • 1992, Bruce Lincoln, Discourse and the Construction of Society (page 158) Freedman began his analysis by noting two important facts about professional wrestling: First, that heels triumph considerably more often than do babyfaces
baby fever
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, humorous or pejorative) An urgent desire to have a baby or grandchild.
    • 2003, Eric Jerome Dickey, Naughty or Nice, New American Library (2004), ISBN 9780786544066, page 75: Then a man passed by with his child on his shoulders. This time last year I had baby fever so bad, it was ridiculous.
    • 2011, Kim Wright, Love in Mid Air, Grand Central Publishing (2011), ISBN 9780446558679, unnumbered page: I was living in Baltimore, teaching art and sleeping with an artist when, out of nowhere, I was swept away in a tide of baby fever.
    • 2011, Sara Horn, My So-Called Life as a Proverbs 31 Wife: A One-Year Experiment... and Its Surprising Results, Harvest House Publishers (2011), ISBN 9780736942133, page 31: A year after we married, I got a bad case of baby fever.
Synonyms: baby rabies
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, mostly, AAVE) Friendly or intimate term of address for a woman.
    • 2010, V. J. Gotastory, Year of the Crackmom My beautiful sister Marveen. You are my babygirl. I didn't know what I had been missing until you appeared in my life.
    • 2011, Kristina Caraballo, Lileannas' Journey (page 103) “Hey I missed your call. What's up?” “Hey babygirl, I was calling to check on you duh. What you doin?{{SIC}}
baby girl
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. a female baby
  2. (sometimes, affectionate, sometimes, pejorative) address for a woman
baby gravy
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, vulgar) semen
    • 2010, Meredith O'Hayre, The Scream Queen's Survival Guide: Avoid Machetes, Defeat Evil Children, Steer Clear of Bloody Dismemberment, and Conquer Other Horror Movie Clichés, Adams Media (2010), ISBN 9781440506093, page 106: Why anyone would ever want to have kids is beyond this Scream Queen. They're smelly, messy, dirty, they never sleep — and those are the ones who haven't been fathered by Satan. Think of the potential for things going wrong when it's Lucifer's baby gravy that gets the eggs-a-cookin'.
Synonyms: See also .
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, pejorative) an abortionist
  2. (slang, pejorative) a pregnant woman who receives an abortion
  3. (slang, pejorative) a person who advocates abortion
  4. (British, obsolete) a long-range Zeppelin bomber
  5. (slang, pejorative, obsolete) a Vietnam veteran returning to the United States, used by war opponents
  6. (slang, pejorative, obsolete) a saloon, used by the Temperance Movement
  7. Used other than as an idiom: baby, killer
Alternative forms: babykiller , baby killer
baby machine
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (derogatory) A woman, regarded as somebody whose sole purpose is to bear children.
baby mama {{wikipedia}} Alternative forms: baby-mama etymology (General American would be baby's mama), 1990s, popularized 2000s.[ "What did Joe Louis have to tell us about Tina Fey?"] on ''Language Log'', December 10, 2008 Possibly from or influenced by same term in Jamaican English, from Jamaican Creole English baby-mother (1966), alternatively due simply to grammatical similarities between AAVE and Jamaican Creole English.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US, slang) Mother of child in common, particularly unmarried.
    • 2008, Ebony Vol. 63, No. 8, Sidestepping Baby Mama Drama - Jun 2008, page 154 For men who must deal with these situations and others like them, the result is what has now been deemed as "baby-mama drama."
    She's not his girlfriend now, but she's one of his baby mamas.
Contentious usage – sometimes used neutrally as a casual term, regardless of marriage status, particularly in the tabloid press,[ Where Do "Baby-Daddies" Come From? The origins of the phrase.] by Julia Turner, ''[[w:Slate (magazine)|Slate]]'', posted Sunday, May 7, 2006. or as a term of endearment. Often considered pejorative, particularly if applied to unmarried black parents – if used by one parent of the other, can imply “child in common but no meaningful relationship”, while if used by outsiders, can imply disapproval of children born out of wedlock; see .“[ Was It a Slur?]”, by Tobin Harshaw, ''New York Times,'' June 12, 2008 More formal variants include “baby’s mama” and “baby’s mother”; in formal usage “mother of one’s child” is preferred. Similar considerations apply to baby daddy.
related terms:
  • baby daddy
  • {{seeCites}}
baby rabies
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, humorous or pejorative) An urgent desire to have a baby or grandchild.
    • 2004, 25 January, Terry Austin, Re: BURKE HAS SUMMONED TERRY AUSTIN!!!,!original/,, “Some grandparents get baby rabies worse than some parents.”
    • 2008, Dawn, "Making the Childfree Choice after a Heartbreaking Choice", in Our Heartbreaking Choices: Forty-Six Women Share Their Stories of Interrupting a Much-Wanted Pregnancy (ed. Christie Brooks), iUniverse (2008), ISBN 9780595631001, unnumbered page: I was absolutely shocked when I came down with “baby rabies” in my early 30's{{sic}} after 11 years of marriage.
    • 2010, Amy Alkon, "Advice Goddess", Pacific Sun, 11 June 2010 - 17 June 2010, page 39: Some women in their 30s, especially those who wake up with baby rabies at 35, continue to maintain high standards: demanding that a man be straight, single and paroled.
Synonyms: baby fever

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