poke fun at


1 [pohk]
verb (used with object), poked, poking.
to prod or push, especially with something narrow or pointed, as a finger, elbow, stick, etc.: to poke someone in the ribs.
to make (a hole, one's way, etc.) by or as by prodding or pushing.
to thrust or push: She poked her head out of the window.
to force, drive, or stir by or as by pushing or thrusting: He poked the fire up.
to thrust obtrusively: The prosecutor kept poking his finger at the defendant.
verb (used without object), poked, poking.
to make a pushing or thrusting movement with the finger, a stick, etc.
to extend or project (often followed by out ): His handkerchief is poking out of his back pocket.
to thrust oneself obtrusively: to poke into something that is not one's affair.
to search curiously; pry (often followed by around or about ).
to go or proceed in a slow or aimless way (often followed by along ).
a thrust or push.
Informal. a slow or dawdling person; slowpoke.
poke fun at, to ridicule or mock, especially covertly or slyly: In her novel, she pokes fun at her ex-husband.
poke one's nose into, Informal. to meddle in; pry into: We felt as if half the people in town were poking their noses into our lives.

1300–50; Middle English < Middle Dutch, Middle Low German poken to thrust. See poach1

pokable, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
poke1 (pəʊk)
vb (when intr, often foll by at) (usually foll by in, out, out of, through, etc) (often foll by along)
1.  (tr) to jab or prod, as with the elbow, the finger, a stick, etc
2.  (tr) to make (a hole, opening, etc) by or as by poking
3.  to thrust (at)
4.  informal (tr) to hit with the fist; punch
5.  to protrude or cause to protrude: don't poke your arm out of the window
6.  (tr) to stir (a fire, pot, etc) by poking
7.  (intr) to meddle or intrude
8.  (intr; often foll by about or around) to search or pry
9.  to loiter, potter, dawdle, etc
10.  slang (tr) (of a man) to have sexual intercourse with
11.  poke fun at to mock or ridicule
12.  poke one's nose into See nose
13.  a jab or prod
14.  short for slowpoke
15.  informal a blow with one's fist; punch
16.  slang sexual intercourse
[C14: from Low German and Middle Dutch poken to thrust, prod, strike]

poke2 (pəʊk)
1.  dialect a pocket or bag
2.  a pig in a poke See pig
[C13: from Old Northern French poque, of Germanic origin; related to Old English pocca bag, Old Norse pokipouch, Middle Dutch poke bag; compare poach²]

poke3 (pəʊk)
1.  Also called: poke bonnet a woman's bonnet with a brim that projects at the front, popular in the 18th and 19th centuries
2.  the brim itself
[C18: from poke1 (in the sense: to thrust out, project)]

poke4 (pəʊk)
short for pokeweed

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

c.1380, perhaps from M.Du. poken "to poke," or M.L.G. poken "to stick with a knife," both from P.Gmc. base *puk-, perhaps imitative. To poke fun "tease" first attested 1840; to poke around "search" is from 1809. The noun meaning "an act of poking" is attested from 1796, originally pugilistic slang.

"sack," 1228, probably from O.N.Fr. poque (12c.), probably from a P.Gmc. *puk- (cf. O.E. pocca, M.Du. poke, O.N. poki "bag, pocket"), from PIE base *beu-, an imitative root associated with words for "to swell."

1634, "tobacco plant," from Narraganset puck "smoke," shortened from Algonquian uppowoc. Klein gives source as Virginian puccoon, lit. "plant for staining." The exact plant meant by the Indians is likewise uncertain.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

poke fun at

see under make fun of.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Idioms & Phrases
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