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[kuh-zoo] /kəˈzu/
noun, plural kazoos.
a musical toy consisting of a tube that is open at both ends and has a hole in the side covered with parchment or membrane, which produces a buzzing sound when the performer hums into one end.
Also called mirliton.
  1. the buttocks.
  2. the anus.
1880-85, Americanism; origin uncertain; alleged to be imitative Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for kazoo
  • So fired, so refined, artificial everything up the kazoo.
  • Presents a show featuring his published and unpublished picture books and songs accompanied by guitar and kazoo.
British Dictionary definitions for kazoo


noun (pl) -zoos
a cigar-shaped musical instrument of metal or plastic with a membranous diaphragm of thin paper that vibrates with a nasal sound when the player hums into it
Word Origin
C20: probably imitative of the sound produced
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 kazoo

1884, American English, probably altered from earlier bazoo "trumpet" (1877); probably ultimately imitative (cf. bazooka). In England, formerly called a Timmy Talker, in France, a mirliton.

Kazoos, the great musical wonder, ... anyone can play it; imitates fowls, animals, bagpipes, etc. [1895 Montgomery Ward catalogue, p.245]

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


  1. The buttocks; anus; ass: an impossible, unreliable, self-destructive pain in the kazoo/ We have subcommittee staff running out the kazoo/ You know he's off balance and you'd like to stick it in his gazoo
  2. Toilet; can: I tore it up and flushed it down the kazoo

[1970s+; origin unknown; perhaps fr Louisiana French zoozoo, ''buttocks, ass''; perhaps kazoo, known in its standard sense fr the 1880s, suggested the anus in being tubular and emitting sounds]

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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