bal·​ly·​hoo ˈba-lē-ˌhü How to pronounce ballyhoo (audio)
plural ballyhoos
: a noisy attention-getting demonstration or talk
: flamboyant, exaggerated, or sensational promotion or publicity
: excited commotion
ballyhoo transitive verb

Examples of ballyhoo in a Sentence

it turned out that the ballyhoo was the result of a movie being filmed on the street the usual ballyhoo intended to fill the seats at megaplexes around the country
Recent Examples on the Web Curiously, there seemed to be no VIP or movie star ballyhoo; instead, as The Times wrote, the inaugural passengers on the north-to-south trip were 150 L.A.-area schoolkids. Patt Morrison, Los Angeles Times, 7 July 2023 This is one bit of ballyhoo that came to pass; the Pittsburgh Pirates held spring training in Paso Robles, and then San Bernardino; the Chicago White Sox in Pasadena; and the Chicago Cubs on Catalina Island. Patt Morrison, Los Angeles Times, 28 Mar. 2023 The news has brought a sizable amount of ballyhoo. Natalie Shure, The New Republic, 19 Nov. 2021 The wanted posters began to disappear years ago with no ballyhoo. Bob Greene, WSJ, 28 Nov. 2022 Jean Smart has been enjoying much-deserved ballyhoo this spring. oregonlive, 25 May 2021 While much of the ballyhoo around the upcoming Mazda CX-90 three-row SUV focuses on its plug-in-hybrid powertrain, there's an inline-six engine in the future lineup that deserves some attention, too. Andrew Krok, Car and Driver, 17 Jan. 2023 The parade began as a ballyhoo event for the famed retailer in Manhattan’s Herald Square in 1924. Jennifer Maas, Variety, 25 Nov. 2022 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'ballyhoo.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


origin unknown

First Known Use

1901, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of ballyhoo was in 1901

Dictionary Entries Near ballyhoo

Cite this Entry

“Ballyhoo.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


bal·​ly·​hoo ˈbal-ē-ˌhü How to pronounce ballyhoo (audio)
: extravagant statements and claims made for publicity
ballyhoo verb

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