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palooka

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noun pa·loo·ka \pə-ˈlü-kə\

Definition of palooka

  1. 1 :  an inexperienced or incompetent boxer

  2. 2 :  oaf, lout



Examples of palooka in a sentence

  1. <I wish he wouldn't bring over here that bunch of palookas he calls his friends.>



Did You Know?

The origin of "palooka" is unknown, though various theories have been put forth. (Some sources credit the baseball player and sportswriter Jack Conway with the coinage, for example.) "Palooka" first appeared in print in 1924 and may have been popularized by a comic strip titled "Joe Palooka" (by Ham Fisher), which debuted a few years later. The probable connection between Fisher's comic and "palooka" only adds to the mystery surrounding this term, however. Joe Palooka was a boxer who was neither incompetent nor clumsy and oafish, and yet the word palooka came to have these negative meanings. In addition, limited evidence shows that "palooka" is occasionally used as a general synonym for "rookie" and also as a term describing horses with very little chance of winning.

Origin of palooka

origin unknown


First Known Use: 1924

Other Combat Sports Terms

Rhymes with palooka


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