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pratfall

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noun prat·fall \ˈprat-ˌfȯl\

Simple Definition of pratfall

  • : a sudden fall in which you end up sitting on the ground

  • : an embarrassing mistake or accident

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of pratfall

  1. 1 :  a fall on the buttocks

  2. 2 :  a humiliating mishap or blunder

Examples of pratfall in a sentence

  1. He slipped and took a pratfall into the mud.



Did You Know?

The human posterior has been given a number of designations over the centuries, some not acceptable in polite company. "Prat," a slang term with only slightly indecorous overtones, has been used in reference to the backside since the 16th century. It wasn't until the 1930s, however, that falling on one's prat gave rise to the term "pratfall." The word first cropped up in the lingo of comedy theater, where a pratfall is often part of a slapstick routine. It wasn't long before we gave the word its extended sense of "blunder." Now, with "prat" rarely used as a synonym of "derriere" anymore, "pratfall" is as apt to suggest getting a pie in the face as landing bang on one's behind.

Origin of pratfall

argot prat buttocks + fall


First Known Use: 1930

Rhymes with pratfall

ALGOL, and all, Antall, appall, Argall, argol, air ball, ashfall, at all, atoll, AWOL, baseball, beach ball, beanball, befall, Bengal, best-ball, birdcall, blackball, Bokmål, bookstall, box stall, bradawl, brick wall, broomball, catcall, catchall, cell wall, COBOL, cold call, cornball, Cornwall, crown gall, cue ball, cure-all, curveball, deadfall, de Gaulle, dodgeball, downfall, downhaul, drywall, duck call, eight ball, enthrall, eyeball, fair ball, fastball, fireball, fire wall, foosball, football, footfall, footwall, forestall, forkball, foul ball, four-ball, fourth wall, free-fall, gadwall, game ball, glycol, golf ball, Goodall, goofball, googol, guildhall, hair ball, handball, hardball, headstall, heelball, highball, holdall, house call, icefall, infall, install, John Paul, jump ball, keelhaul, know-all, landfall, Landsmål, line-haul, line squall, lowball, Maillol, meatball, menthol, mess hall, miscall, mothball, Naipaul, naphthol, Nepal, nightfall, nutgall, oddball, outfall, outhaul, paintball, pinball, pitfall, plimsoll, prayer shawl, pub crawl, puffball, punchball, pushball, rainfall, rainsquall, recall, rial, Riksmål, rockfall, roll call, rorqual, Saint Paul, save-all, screwball, seawall, short-haul, shortfall, sick call, sidewall, sleazeball, slimeball, snowball, snowfall, softball, sour ball, speedball, spitball, stickball, stonewall, stone wall, stoopball, strip mall, T-ball, tea ball, tell-all, three-ball, toll call, town hall, trackball, Tyrol, Udall, Walsall, what all, whip stall, Whitehall, whitewall, windfall, windgall, withal, you-all


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