\ ˈbü How to pronounce boo (audio) \

Definition of boo

 (Entry 1 of 4)

used to express contempt or disapproval or to startle or frighten
plural boos

Definition of boo (Entry 2 of 4)

1 : a shout of disapproval or contempt
2 : any utterance at all usually used in negative constructionsnever said boo


booed; booing; boos

Definition of boo (Entry 3 of 4)

intransitive verb

: to deride especially by uttering a prolonged boo

transitive verb

: to express disapproval of by booing the crowd booed the referee
plural boos

Definition of boo (Entry 4 of 4)

US slang
: a romantic partner : sweetheart, honey Your parents might keep a sharp eye on potential partners and your besties may lay down difficult "friend tests," but only one real opinion on your new boo truly matters: what your dog thinks of them.— Jaime Lees This has left me skeptical of all new relationships—including my new boo.— Griffin Wynne

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Synonyms & Antonyms for boo

Synonyms: Noun (1)

Antonyms: Noun (1)

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Examples of boo in a Sentence

Noun (1) A chorus of boos was heard after the shot missed the goal. The announcement was greeted by a mixture of boos and cheers. Verb Many people in the crowd booed when the announcement was made. Many people in the crowd booed the announcement, but a few people cheered it.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Interjection C’mon, when the day began the Dodgers were in third place in the standings, but led the league in pitching and led all of baseball in run differential and … boo! Bill Plaschke, latimes.com, "From day to day, the Dodgers stay unpredictable," 25 May 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The boo-ster-thon offers low-cost, annual vaccines to dogs and cats for $75 each. NOLA.com, "No-kill shelter continues discounted vaccinations in Covington," 9 Nov. 2020 But this year, cuffing season and the COVID-19 pandemic converge — and the pressure is on to lock down a quarantine boo before the cold weather (and possibly a second viral wave) is upon us. Molly Longman, refinery29.com, "Cuffing Season Is About To Get Way More Intense, Thanks To COVID-19," 6 Oct. 2020 Looking for a boo-tiful decoration—or three—to make your backyard seem more ominous this October? Shayna Murphy, USA TODAY, "12 spooktacular Halloween decorations for 2020 you can get on sale," 30 Sep. 2020 The good news is that many haunted houses, ghost tours and escape rooms are open and ready for boo-sness, while also taking special precautions to keep their guests and family healthy. Richard A. Marini, ExpressNews.com, "San Antonians will still have haunted houses, escape rooms, ghosts tours this Halloween despite coronavirus," 25 Sep. 2020 The first step to finding the perfect gift is figuring out what your boo is most into right now. Erin Parker, Glamour, "The 36 Best Gifts for Your Boyfriend This Holiday Season," 25 Sep. 2020 Don’t say boo: The state health department is recommending against Halloween hayrides and haunted houses to protect people from the coronavirus. cleveland, "Mike DeWine gives insight into his thought process during the coronavirus crisis: Capitol Letter," 21 Sep. 2020 Now's the time to ramp up the PDA and lavish your boo with gifts, flowers, cards, and dinners, Montúfar says. Elizabeth Gulino, refinery29.com, "Venus Is In Fiery Leo, & Your Love Life Is About To Get Red Hot," 5 Sep. 2020 The Houston Astros played their first road game of the 2020 season and did not hear a single boo. Josh Peter, USA TODAY, "Opinion: Astros get victory but not the boos they deserve in first road game of 2020," 1 Aug. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The act of being there in person to watch, cheer, scream and boo almost certainly has some effect on engagement. Star Tribune, "A Packers week without intensity, animosity doesn't feel right," 31 Oct. 2020 The stripes looking funny on that cushion behind you boo. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "Every Time the Kardashian/Jenners Were Caught in a Photoshop Fail," 30 Oct. 2020 While no fans boo them in ballparks, plenty root against them at home. John Shea, SFChronicle.com, "How Dusty Baker handles Astros’ villain role: ‘I’ve been a villain most of my life’," 5 Oct. 2020 And yet, with no fans allowed in the stadium to boo them, the Astros manhandled a team that has forgotten how to win in the playoffs. Jared Diamond, WSJ, "How the Minnesota Twins Became the Worst Playoff Team in Sports History," 1 Oct. 2020 Whatever their allegiance, fans must cheer and boo with their masks on. Mark Heim | Mheim@al.com, al, "Bills vs. Dolphins live stream (9/20): How to watch NFL Week 2 online, TV, time," 20 Sep. 2020 The first game of the 2020 NFL season was played Thursday night, and only one player took a knee for the anthem, but players on both teams linked arms during the anthem, prompting some fans in attendance to boo from the stands. Andrew Mark Miller, Washington Examiner, "NFL team releases video slamming league's 'empty gestures' and will stay inside locker room for both anthems," 11 Sep. 2020 Players gathered at midfield and linked arms during the national anthem in Kansas City Thursday, causing many fans in the stands to boo the players. Andrew Mark Miller, Washington Examiner, "Baltimore Ravens stand for black national anthem but kneel for US national anthem," 13 Sep. 2020 There were no fans to boo the referees on the two pass interference calls on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' opening possession. Rod Walker, NOLA.com, "Walker: This Saints win made it loud and clear — there's no recreating the Superdome atmosphere," 13 Sep. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'boo.' 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 boo


1639, in the meaning defined above

Noun (1)

1884, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1833, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Noun (2)

1988, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for boo


expressive formation; the voiced labial release and high vowel presumably heighten the suddenness of the utterance

Noun (1)

derivative of boo entry 1


derivative of boo entry 2

Noun (2)

of uncertain origin

Note: Perhaps ultimately a hypocoristic reduction of brother, applied to unrelated males, but the details are unclear.

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Learn More about boo

Statistics for boo

Cite this Entry

“Boo.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/boo. Accessed 25 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for boo



English Language Learners Definition of boo

: to show dislike or disapproval of someone or something by shouting "Boo" slowly
\ ˈbü How to pronounce boo (audio) \

Kids Definition of boo

 (Entry 1 of 3)

used to express disapproval or to startle or frighten


plural boos

Kids Definition of boo (Entry 2 of 3)

: a cry expressing disapproval


booed; booing

Kids Definition of boo (Entry 3 of 3)

: to express disapproval of with boos

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More from Merriam-Webster on boo

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for boo

Nglish: Translation of boo for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of boo for Arabic Speakers

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