noun, plural Punchinellos, Punchinelloes.
a grotesque or absurd chief character in a puppet show of Italian origin: the prototype of Punch.
any similarly grotesque or absurd person or thing.

1660–70; < Italian (Naples dial.) polecenella character in the puppet show, diminutive of polecana turkey-cock chick < Late Latin pullicēnus, derivative of Latin pullus pullet

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To punchinello
World English Dictionary
Punchinello (ˌpʌntʃɪˈnɛləʊ)
n , pl -los, -loes
1.  a type of clown from Italian burlesque or puppet shows, the prototype of Punch
2.  (sometimes not capital) any grotesque or absurd character
[C17: from earlier Polichinello, from Italian (Neapolitan dialect) Polecenella, from Italian pulcino chicken, ultimately from Latin pullus young animal]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Related Words
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature