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put-on

[n. poo t-on, -awn; adj. poo t-on, -awn] /n. ˈpʊtˌɒn, -ˌɔn; adj. ˈpʊtˈɒn, -ˈɔn/
noun, Informal.
1.
an act or instance of putting someone on.
2.
a prank or pretense, especially one perpetrated or assumed in mock seriousness; hoax; spoof.
3.
affected manner or behavior; pretentiousness.
adjective
4.
assumed, feigned, pretended, or disguised:
a put-on manner that didn't fool anyone.
Origin
1855-1860
1855-60; adj., noun use of verb phrase put (someone) on
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for put-on
  • And that's how people are listening to me, because they know it's not a put-on.
  • If not exactly a deliberate swindle, it is an endlessly repeated put-on, a shaggy-dog story without a punch line.
British Dictionary definitions for put-on

put on

verb (transitive, mainly adverb)
1.
to clothe oneself in: to put on a coat
2.
(usually passive) to adopt (an attitude or feeling) insincerely: his misery was just put on
3.
to present or stage (a play, show, etc)
4.
to increase or add: she put on weight, the batsman put on fifty runs before lunch
5.
to cause (an electrical device) to function
6.
(also preposition) to wager (money) on a horse race, game, etc: he put ten pounds on the favourite
7.
(also preposition) to impose as a burden or levy: to put a tax on cars
8.
(cricket) to cause (a bowler) to bowl
9.
put someone on
  1. to connect (a person) by telephone
  2. (slang) to mock or tease
noun (slang, mainly US & Canadian)
10.
a hoax or piece of mockery
11.
an affected manner or mode of behaviour
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 put-on
n.

"ruse, deception," 1937, from earlier adjectival meaning "assumed, feigned" (1620s), a figurative extension of the notion of putting on costumes or disguises; from put (v.) + on (adv.). The expression put (someone) on "play a trick on" seems to be a back-formation from the noun.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for put-on

put-on

adjective

Feigned; affected: his put-on machismo (1621+)

noun
  1. An act, remark, etc, intended to fool someone; a more or less amiable deception: a master of the ''put-on,'' a mildly cruel art/ They nudge us that what they're doing is just a ''put-on'' (1896+)
  2. (also put-on artist) A pretender; phony: to equate an original talent like Kenneth Anger with a put-on like Andy Warhol (1960s+)

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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