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[boi-kot] /ˈbɔɪ kɒt/
verb (used with object)
to combine in abstaining from, or preventing dealings with, as a means of intimidation or coercion:
to boycott a store.
to abstain from buying or using:
to boycott foreign products.
the practice of boycotting.
an instance of boycotting.
Origin of boycott
after Charles C. Boycott (1832-97), English estate manager in Ireland, against whom nonviolent coercive tactics were used in 1880
Related forms
boycotter, noun
antiboycott, noun, adjective
proboycott, adjective
Can be confused
boycott, embargo. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for boycott
  • Florrie and her family vow to boycott all franchise establishments for a month.
  • They are mad about the delay so they are going to boycott the film.
  • Now, almost 24 years old, he is trying to do what a boycott in 1980 and that injury in 1984 prevented: win an Olympic gold medal.
  • To boycott a person is to refuse to deal with him, to take any notice of him, .
  • Britain's largest faculty union has voted overwhelmingly to overturn a controversial boycott of two Israeli universities.
  • Some disappointed homsteaders launched a boycott.
  • Tonight's made-for-television movie incited conservatives to threaten a boycott, which led the network to cancel it.
  • There was speculation in recent months that he would boycott the Olympics .
  • Nonetheless, students threatened a boycott and circulated a petition calling for the proms to be moved back to Fridays.
  • But it's too soon to say whether a total boycott of these products is necessary.
British Dictionary definitions for boycott


(transitive) to refuse to have dealings with (a person, organization, etc) or refuse to buy (a product) as a protest or means of coercion: to boycott foreign produce
an instance or the use of boycotting
Word Origin
C19: after Captain C. C. Boycott (1832–97), Irish land agent for the Earl of Erne, County Mayo, Ireland, who was a victim of such practices for refusing to reduce rents


Geoff(rey). born 1940, English cricketer: played for Yorkshire (1962–86); played in 108 test matches (1964–1982); first England batsman to score 8,000 test runs
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
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Word Origin and History for boycott

1880, noun and verb, from Irish Land League ostracism of Capt. Charles C. Boycott (1832-1897), land agent of Lough-Mask in County Mayo, who refused to lower rents for his tenant farmers. Quickly adopted by newspapers in languages as far afield as Japanese (boikotto). The family name is from a place in England.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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boycott in Culture

boycott definition

The refusal to purchase the products of an individual, corporation, or nation as a way to bring social and political pressure for change.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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