\ ˈgün How to pronounce goon (audio) \

Definition of goon

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a stupid person
2a : a man hired to terrorize or eliminate opponents

go on

went on; gone on; going on; goes on

Definition of go on (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to continue on or as if on a journey life goes on went on to greater things
b : to keep on : continue went on smoking
c : proceed went on to win the election
2 : to take place : happen what's going on
3 : to talk especially in an effusive manner the way people go on about their ancestors— Hamilton Basso

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Synonyms & Antonyms for goon

Synonyms: Noun

airhead, birdbrain, blockhead, bonehead, bubblehead, chowderhead, chucklehead, clodpoll (or clodpole), clot [British], cluck, clunk, cretin, cuddy (or cuddie) [British dialect], deadhead, dim bulb [slang], dimwit, dip, dodo, dolt, donkey, doofus [slang], dope, dork [slang], dullard, dum-dum, dumbbell, dumbhead, dummkopf, dummy, dunce, dunderhead, fathead, gander, golem, goof, half-wit, hammerhead, hardhead, idiot, ignoramus, imbecile, jackass, know-nothing, knucklehead, lamebrain, loggerhead [chiefly dialect], loon, lump, lunkhead, meathead, mome [archaic], moron, mug [chiefly British], mutt, natural, nimrod [slang], nincompoop, ninny, ninnyhammer, nit [chiefly British], nitwit, noddy, noodle, numskull (or numbskull), oaf, pinhead, prat [British], ratbag [chiefly Australian], saphead, schlub (also shlub) [slang], schnook [slang], simpleton, stock, stupe, stupid, thickhead, turkey, woodenhead, yahoo, yo-yo

Synonyms: Verb

be, befall, betide, chance, come, come about, come down, come off, cook, do, go down [slang], hap, happen, occur, pass, transpire

Antonyms: Noun

brain, genius

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Examples of goon in a Sentence


He was beat up by a couple of goons. an unfortunate tendency to call those who disagree with him “brainless goons


what in the world is going on in there? my, but Aunt Betty does go on about all of her aches and pains
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

To others, the premise of three Irish Mafia wives in the Hell’s Kitchen section of 1970s New York City who resort to the goon-squad actions of their out-of-commission husbands sounds like something to poke fun at. Armond White, National Review, "The Kitchen Is a Berserk, Female-Revenge Fantasy — and a Bad Movie," 9 Aug. 2019 So the old way was the writer's dream and now Popovich has his goons coming for you. Ben Golliver And Michael Lee,, "Gregg Popovich Can Finally Get His Team USA Revenge | Open Floor Podcast," 9 Aug. 2019 Read more: Hong Kong’s Leader Offers No Solutions After Night of Violence Hong Kong’s mysterious Mafiosos have often been accused of setting goons-for-hire on protesters. Laignee Barron / Hong Kong, Time, "Suspected 'Triad' Gangs Mark Dangerous New Phase in Hong Kong's Crisis," 23 July 2019 The Blues, who went all goon squad in the final moments of Sunday’s 5-1 loss, have won a Game 7 during this journey (against the Stars in double-overtime in Round 2). Chad Finn,, "Bruins’ poise and experience were the difference in Game 6, and should be in Game 7," 10 June 2019 Hopefully, the goon in the teal shorts who went for a sucker punch to the back of the head gets reprimanded very soon. Khadrice Rollins,, "Wild Brawl Breaks Out Between Parents at Baseball Game for Seven-Year-Olds," 19 June 2019 So the goon squad down in Springfield gets a 1,581-page budget on May 30. Chicago Tribune, Lake County News-Sun, "Talk of the County: With DNA evidence, reinstate death penalty," 10 June 2019 Flitting up behind enemy guards causes Hummingbird to automatically dispatch the goons with a sword, adding to a score multiplier that decays over time. Steven Strom, Ars Technica, "Never Stop Sneakin’ is a brilliant send-up of ’90s stealth games," 12 July 2018 Will writing this get you in hot water with the corporate goons of Big Umbrella? Jenny Hollander, Marie Claire, "Umbrellas Are a Sham," 19 Nov. 2018

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


1921, in the meaning defined at sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for goon


probably short for English dialect gooney simpleton

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Dictionary Entries near goon





go on

go on at


Statistics for goon

Last Updated

18 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for goon

The first known use of goon was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for goon



English Language Learners Definition of goon

chiefly US : a person who is hired to threaten, beat up, or kill someone
chiefly British : a stupid person

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More from Merriam-Webster on goon

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with goon

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for goon

Nglish: Translation of goon for Spanish Speakers

Comments on goon

What made you want to look up goon? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a usually brief trip or an expedition

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