clown

noun
\ ˈklau̇n How to pronounce clown (audio) \

Definition of clown

 (Entry 1 of 2)

2 : a rude ill-bred person : boor
3a : a fool, jester, or comedian in an entertainment (such as a play) specifically : a grotesquely dressed comedy performer in a circus
b : a person who habitually jokes and plays the buffoon

clown

verb
clowned; clowning; clowns

Definition of clown (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to act as or like a clown always clowning around

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Synonyms for clown

Synonyms: Noun

buffo, buffoon, harlequin, zany

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Examples of clown in a Sentence

Noun

Those big shoes make you look like a clown! Who's the clown standing in the middle of the road? those clowns at the state capital
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The up-close, floor-level performance space at the playhouse is ideal for tambourine chorus lines, cakewalks and elbow-to-the-ribs clown antics. Christopher Arnott, courant.com, "Review: 'The Scottsboro Boys’ a searing, spirited, well-told tale of racial injustice at Playhouse on Park," 1 July 2019 Or a death march of also-rans and wannabes tumbling out on stage like clowns from a small car? Bill Goodykoontz, azcentral, "Why should you care about the Democratic debates? Here are 5 reasons you should watch," 26 June 2019 The 30th annual charity classic car show, dog show, martial arts demo, rides on the Euclid Beach boys rocketship car. · 10 a.m. to 12 noon-Balloon clowns and face painters · 1 p.m.-Free games and awards every hour. Linda Gandee/special To Cleveland.com, cleveland.com, "Independence Day plans for Bay Village, Rocky River and Westlake," 25 June 2019 Writer and internet wag Jesse McLaren has tweeted a new version of the Cheers opening credits which finds various incarnations of Stephen King’s homicidal supernatural clown hanging out among the familiar bar workers and clientele. Clark Collis, EW.com, "Spot Pennywise in horrifying new version of Cheers opening credits," 22 June 2019 Storyteller and movement artist Jerry Hager recreates Red Skelton’s clown routines in August. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Summer arts 2019 | Dance: PGK Dance Project, Mojalet Dance Collective, San Diego Civic Youth Ballet and more," 16 June 2019 More news Odd in Oregon ROSE FRACAS: A KGW anchor’s colloquial language and local clown ignorance sparked outrage during 1975 Rose Fest parade. oregonlive.com, "Police shoot, kill man after altercation in Pearl District stairwell: Morning Briefing," 10 June 2019 There are about 2,000 breathing residents in the Village of St. Charles, but each October, 6,000 visitors arrive at the Village of the Living Dead, not including the 70 or so ghouls and demonic clowns and ax murderers who work annually for Guyton. Christopher Borrelli, chicagotribune.com, "The country’s second-largest haunted house trade show is in Schaumburg. Where else will you find a 465-pound headless corpse?," 10 June 2019 For the Rolling Thunder Revue, the enigmatic singer took the art of self-creation to a whole new level, wearing a clear plastic mask and/or clown white (a concept improbably borrowed from Kiss after catching a concert). Ed Masley, azcentral, "Martin Scorsese captures the mystery and magic of Bob Dylan in 'Rolling Thunder Revue'," 10 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

This is not just a bunch of clowns getting clowned. Zan Romanoff, Vox, "What we get wrong about multilevel marketing, explained by the host of the popular podcast about it," 30 Nov. 2018 Now, that's skewed a little from clowning Vancouver 11-on-9 last weekend, and nobody else has played more matches than Sporting. Sam Mellinger, kansascity, "Mellinger Minutes: Moose and the Royals' rare pace, Chiefs' draft, and one more Bud Lathrop story | The Kansas City Star," 24 Apr. 2018 Despite getting knocked out of the playoffs, Lance Stephenson is still here to clown J.R. Smith on Instagram. Dakota Crawford, Indianapolis Star, "After J.R. Smith's Game 1 blunder, Lance Stephenson drops an Instagram burn," 1 June 2018 Seems as if the airlines are still clowning and being targeted with lawsuits because of the clownery. Breanna Edwards, The Root, "Nigerian Woman, Who Was Removed From United Flight After a White Passenger Complained She Was ‘Pungent,’ Files Lawsuit," 14 May 2018 Wearing a black polka-dot dress with a signature red lip, Gomez posed for selfies with eager fans and clowned around with some of the youngest in the venue’s photobooth. Melania Hidalgo, PEOPLE.com, "Selena Gomez Surprises Fans at Hospital Prom — and Sticks Around for Selfies," 25 June 2018 Budda Baker was in Seattle this weekend and attended the UW football spring preview Saturday at Husky Stadium, where he was seen clowning around with his former coaches and teammates. Mike Carter, The Seattle Times, "Ballard shooting victim reportedly brother of ex-Husky star Budda Baker," 23 Apr. 2018 Minutes earlier, Stern delivered a characteristically bawdy address in honor of the classic New Jersey rockers, giving the band plenty of love while clowning on frontman Jon Bon Jovi, guitarist Richie Sambora and Rolling Stone scion Jann Wenner. Maeve Mcdermott, USA TODAY, "Howard Stern's 10 best Bon Jovi jokes at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction," 14 Apr. 2018 Digital assistants egg on every other appliance in the house to clown around. Joe Queenan, WSJ, "My Electronic Devices Are Laughing at Me," 22 Mar. 2018

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

Noun

1563, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1599, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for clown

Noun

probably of Low German origin; akin to Frisian klönne clumsy fellow, Old English clyne lump of metal

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Dictionary Entries near clown

Clovis I

clow

clowder

clown

clown's allheal

clownage

clown car

Statistics for clown

Last Updated

6 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for clown

The first known use of clown was in 1563

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More Definitions for clown

clown

noun

English Language Learners Definition of clown

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: someone who performs in a circus, who wears funny clothes and makeup, and who tries to make people laugh
: someone who often does funny things to make people laugh
informal : a rude or stupid person

clown

verb

English Language Learners Definition of clown (Entry 2 of 2)

: to act like a clown : to say funny things or act in a silly way

clown

noun
\ ˈklau̇n How to pronounce clown (audio) \

Kids Definition of clown

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a performer (as in a circus) who entertains by playing tricks and who usually wears comical clothes and makeup
2 : someone who does things to make people laugh

clown

verb
clowned; clowning

Kids Definition of clown (Entry 2 of 2)

: to act in a funny or silly way : act like a clown

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More from Merriam-Webster on clown

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with clown

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for clown

Spanish Central: Translation of clown

Nglish: Translation of clown for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of clown for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about clown

Comments on clown

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