boo·​gey·​man | \ ˈbu̇-gē-ˌman How to pronounce boogeyman (audio) , ˈbü-\
variants: or less commonly boogerman \ ˈbu̇-​gər-​ How to pronounce boogerman (audio) , ˈbü-​ \

Definition of boogeyman

Examples of boogeyman in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

In one especially disturbing detail, Facebook employed a Republican opposition research company named Definers to discredit its critics by linking them to liberal billionaire and conservative boogeyman George Soros. Emily Stewart, Vox, "Facebook won’t fix itself," 15 Nov. 2018 But with a $10 million budget, the tale of an internet-famous boogeyman has a quick path to profitability for Sony. Tyler Mccarthy, Fox News, "'The Meg' and 'BlacKkKlansman' take a surprising leads at the box office," 12 Aug. 2018 But in Washington, Huawei has long been a boogeyman, with myriad accusations against it including spying and cyber theft. Jacky Wong, WSJ, "The Trouble With Huawei Will Spread," 6 Dec. 2018 Soros is a boogeyman to conservatives, and attacks on him often have an anti-Semitic tinge. Emily Stewart, Vox, "There are many reasons to be mad at Sheryl Sandberg. Asking about Soros’s Facebook interests isn’t one of them.," 30 Nov. 2018 That turns the character from a morality boogeyman into a metaphor for the vicious, unexpected cruelty that ordinary life can bring. Bryan Bishop, The Verge, "The new Halloween is a slasher movie with an actual message," 19 Oct. 2018 And even though court processes have improved, foreign investors in situations where over-indebted companies are cutting jobs run the risk of quickly becoming a convenient boogeyman. Andrew Peaple, WSJ, "Thick Skins and Local Savvy Needed in China’s Bad Debt Markets," 12 Nov. 2018 And finally, Arizona is a red state and Californian Steyer is a convenient boogeyman. David Roberts, Vox, "Fossil fuel money crushed clean energy ballot initiatives across the country," 7 Nov. 2018 That will cheer Orban, who has made the Jewish investor his personal nemesis and national boogeyman in recent years. Griff Witte, Washington Post, "Viktor Orban promised ‘revenge’ against his enemies in Hungary. Now they’re preparing for it.," 14 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'boogeyman.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of boogeyman

circa 1850, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for boogeyman

by alteration

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Last Updated

21 Feb 2019

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The first known use of boogeyman was circa 1850

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