cat·​call ˈkat-ˌkȯl How to pronounce catcall (audio)
: a loud or raucous cry made especially to express disapproval (as at a sports event)
Even Winslow, who led the league in catches for the second straight year, was hearing catcalls.Rick Reilly
: a loud, sexually suggestive call or comment directed at someone publicly (as on the street)
… every single time I go running in a public place without my male running partner, I am the target of catcalls.Natalie DeBlasio
catcall verb

Examples of catcall in a Sentence

The pitcher heard angry catcalls as he walked off the field. the band's sloppy playing produced only catcalls from the crowd
Recent Examples on the Web As this incident has shown, what sounds to one person like a term of respect can feel like a catcall to another. Beth Teitell,, 7 Apr. 2023 Enter Email Sign Up And President Biden’s criticism in his State of the Union address of a proposal by Senator Rick Scott, a Florida Republican, that Democrats said would threaten Social Security and Medicare sparked an unprecedented burst of catcalls from GOP lawmakers. Jim Puzzanghera,, 20 Feb. 2023 This was not a vulgar catcall—I was swathed in more fabric than the Virgin Mary. Katharine K. Zarrella, WSJ, 2 Apr. 2022 Meet the Fighting Irish opponents, dates and locations for 2020, along with a prominent returning opposing player Indianapolis Star SOUTH BEND — Brian Kelly hears the whispers, which sometimes probably feel more like catcalls. Eric Hansen, Indianapolis Star, 5 Mar. 2020 Should the rare Dolphins touchdown bring cheers or catcalls? Jody Rosen, The New Yorker, 19 Oct. 2019 When the 43-year-old came to the stage here at a university student center in the Detroit suburbs, about half of the crowd gave her a standing ovation – and the other half unleashed a chorus of boos and catcalls. Griff Witte, Washington Post, 16 Dec. 2019 There were catcalls from a disappointed Orediggers sideline, in an attempt to shout down the young Lions cornerback, who firmly stood his ground, wearing an unbeatable smile that’s a blessing of his genes. Mark Kiszla, The Denver Post, 30 Nov. 2019 Joseph drew a large crowd at her first court appearance this month, emerging handcuffed from a police vehicle to a burst of jeers and catcalls, schoolchildren in matching uniforms struggling to catch a glimpse of her through the crowd., 20 Oct. 2019

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

Word History

First Known Use

1693, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of catcall was in 1693

Dictionary Entries Near catcall

Cite this Entry

“Catcall.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


cat·​call -ˌkȯl How to pronounce catcall (audio)
: a sound like the cry of a cat or a noise expressing disapproval
catcall verb

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