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[hawrs-pley] /ˈhɔrsˌpleɪ/
rough or boisterous play or pranks.
Origin of horseplay
1580-90; horse + play
Related forms
horseplayful, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for horseplay
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • At first Ben, who had taken but little interest in the horseplay just enacted, kept well to the front.

    Dave Porter At Bear Camp Edward Stratemeyer
  • But the steady concert of the snoring sleepers was unbroken by any horseplay.

    Out of the Depths Robert Ames Bennet
  • Of course, there was some horseplay in which even Phil Franklin indulged.

  • There was a good deal of horseplay, and also something in the way of hazing.

    The Rover Boys at Colby Hall Arthur M. Winfield
  • The horseplay and pot-house atmosphere reduce me to despair.

    Letters of Anton Chekhov Anton Chekhov
  • There was none of the kidding and horseplay that would have been normal in such a group.

    The Year When Stardust Fell Raymond F. Jones
  • Doc Tremain walked out seriously enough, apparently not at all amused by the horseplay that was taking place.

    Lefty Locke Pitcher-Manager Burt L. Standish
  • Men, when half-angry, are in their horseplay rather disposed to be brutal, and it was so here.

    Sweet Mace George Manville Fenn
British Dictionary definitions for horseplay


rough, boisterous, or rowdy play
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 horseplay

"rough, excessive play," 1580s, from horse (n.) with its associations of "strong, coarse" + play (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for horseplay



Rough and boisterous playing; coarse physical merriment (1589+)

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