hoodlum was our Word of the Day on 05/16/2017. Hear the podcast!
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Examples of hoodlum in a Sentence
a couple of hoodlums held up the convenience store
Recent Examples of hoodlum from the Web
The nineteen-nineties brought mafia and oligarchy to the Donbas, and saw the rise of a local hoodlum turned kleptocrat, Viktor Yanukovych, who, in 2010, was elected President of Ukraine.
Sixty years ago, there was released a very weird little bit of noir called Suddenly, in which Frank Sinatra played a hoodlum who comes to the town of Suddenly, California in order to assassinate the president of the United States.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hoodlum'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
A hoodlum can be anyone from a dangerous thug to a young person who’s just up to no good. The exact origins of the word are not known, but one theory is that the word derives from hudelum, an adjective that means "disorderly" in dialects of German spoken in and around the region of Swabia. A similar-looking word for a young troublemaker is hooligan, but that word is not related to hoodlum; rather, it most likely derives from the name of Patrick Hooligan, an Irish youth purported to have wreaked havoc in the streets of Southwark, England, in the late 19th century.
Origin and Etymology of hoodlum
perhaps from German dialect (Swabia) hudelum disorderly
First Known Use: 1866See Words from the same year
HOODLUM Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of hoodlum for English Language Learners
: a tough and violent criminal
HOODLUM Defined for Kids
Seen and Heard
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