Why was clemency trending last week?


[n. bal-ee-hoo; v. bal-ee-hoo, bal-ee-hoo] /n. ˈbæl iˌhu; v. ˈbæl iˌhu, ˌbæl iˈhu/
noun, plural ballyhoos.
a clamorous and vigorous attempt to win customers or advance any cause; blatant advertising or publicity.
clamor or outcry.
a halfbeak, Hemiramphus brasiliensis, inhabiting both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.
verb (used with object), verb (used without object), ballyhooed, ballyhooing.
to advertise or push by ballyhoo.
Origin of ballyhoo
1830-40, Americanism; of uncertain origin
1. buildup, hoopla, fanfare; hype. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for ballyhoo
  • Its success seems directly tied to the degree in which automakers ballyhoo their winners.
  • Scientifically speaking, the prophecies are strictly ballyhoo.
  • The movie is getting such stentorian ballyhoo that a lot of cinemagoers are likely to think less of it than it deserves.
  • The record fish was caught on a simple bottom rig baited with a combination of squid and ballyhoo.
  • You'll work faster and concentrate harder, they ballyhoo.
  • As with the past reports, trolling ballyhoo using spreader bars is still advised for catching tuna.
  • Perez stated they used ballyhoo as bait and nylon thread, since they did not have any poles, and fished for six hours.
  • Rigged ballyhoo seemed to be the ticket for the yellowfin catches.
British Dictionary definitions for ballyhoo


noun (informal)
a noisy, confused, or nonsensical situation or uproar
sensational or blatant advertising or publicity
verb -hoos, -hooing, -hooed
(transitive) (mainly US) to advertise or publicize by sensational or blatant methods
Word Origin
C19: of uncertain origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for ballyhoo

"publicity, hype," 1908, from circus slang, "a short sample of a sideshow" (1901), of unknown origin. There is a village of Ballyhooly in County Cork, Ireland. In nautical lingo, ballahou or ballahoo (1867, perhaps 1836) meant "an ungainly vessel," from Spanish balahu "schooner."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for ballyhoo



An alumnus or alumna

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for ballyhoo

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for ballyhoo

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for ballyhoo