noun, often attributive
\ˈhüp also ˈhu̇p \

Definition of hoop 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a circular strip used especially for holding together the staves of containers or as a plaything

2a : a circular figure or object : ring

b : the rim of a basketball goal broadly : the entire goal

3 : a circle or series of circles of flexible material used to expand a woman's skirt

4 : basketball usually used in plural


hooped; hooping; hoops

Definition of hoop (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to bind or fasten with or as if with a hoop

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Other Words from hoop


hooplike \ ˈhüp-​ˌlīk also  ˈhu̇p \ adjective


hooper noun

Synonyms for hoop

Synonyms: Noun

band, circle, eye, loop, ring, round

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Examples of hoop in a Sentence


made Christmas garlands from hoops of red and green construction paper

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Get the defensive rebound and take it all the way to the hoop. Vince Ellis, Detroit Free Press, "Henry Ellenson breaks slump in Detroit Pistons summer league win 105-97," 9 July 2018 Mohiuddin, born in Pakistan, told The Arizona Republic that nearby businesses run by white owners have not had to jump through the same hoops. Lily Altavena, azcentral, "Hitching Post Saloon owner sues Apache Junction, alleging racial discrimination," 29 June 2018 Quality basketball, although Cruz can get to the hoop and Kimmel has a little touch from the outside. Charles Curtis, For The Win, "Watch Jimmy Kimmel and Ted Cruz play terrible basketball for charity," 19 June 2018 On the last play of the half, Michael Mayer stole the ball the lane and got it to Ruthsatz, who sprinted to the hoop and got a layup in just before the buzzer. James Weber, Cincinnati.com, "Covington Catholic Colonels overwhelm Oldham County Colonels to win state semis," 17 Mar. 2018 The Bears committed 10 first-half turnovers, many of which resulted in Jones or junior Jaheim Holden driving to the hoop on the other end. Steve Reaven, chicagotribune.com, "Ryan Bost's defense helps Evanston exceed expectations, reach state," 15 Mar. 2018 Children enjoyed an inflatable slide, basketball hoops and giant-sized Twister and other classic games. Kimberly Fornek, chicagotribune.com, "Parade, craft fair and turtle races mark Fourth of July fun in Hinsdale," 5 July 2018 But since then, much has changed in the world of hoops footwear. Sara Germano, WSJ, "Puma Gives Basketball Another Shot," 21 June 2018 On the second story, a sitting area with oversize windows takes in a rectangular yard with a pool, spa and basketball hoop. Jack Flemming, latimes.com, "‘Ridiculousness’ host Steelo Brim goes wild for newly built Cape Cod," 15 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Garrett said during a recent interview at Brett Ballard’s Washburn University hoops camp at Lee Arena in Topeka. Gary Bedore, kansascity, "KU sophomore Garrett changes shooting form: 'I feel comfortable now'," 2 July 2018 The image of the Mamba, relentless and obsessive, fed the perception that he would be lost without the competitive outlet that hoops provided. Lee Jenkins, SI.com, "Fantastic Voyage: Kobe Bryant Is Now an Entertainment Mogul with a Friendlier Mission," 12 July 2018 If the hooper cannot hoop through the full minute with the Hula-Hoop, try starting over again or try collecting data for only 30 seconds. Science Buddies, Scientific American, "Swiveling Science: Applying Physics to Hula-Hooping," 11 July 2013 The locale was Staples Center, one of the grandest stages a basketball player can hoop on. Patrick Brennan, Cincinnati.com, "Your call: Which Xavier University loss in NCAA Tournament was the worst? Vot in our poll. \," 19 Mar. 2018 When combined with his deadpan delivery and wry sense of humor, each obstacle to overcome or hoop to jump through takes on a life of its own. Alexis Burling, SFChronicle.com, "‘I Will Be Complete,’ by Glen David Gold," 21 June 2018 At La Costa Glen, Joan still practices hooping with her original bamboo ring. Pam Kragen, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Carlsbad's 'Hula Girl' gives her spin on toy's history," 9 June 2018 Young broke out during the PK80 Invitational in front of the tournaments’ namesake, Nike chairman Phil Knight, and has played on the Nike hoops circuit since AAU. Jarrel Harris, SI.com, "Trae Young, Marvin Bargley and Basketball's Next Sneaker Stars," 21 Feb. 2018 Related Group activities there ranged from ballet lessons and study sessions to hula-hooping to Taylor Swift and playing Uno. NBC News, "On ninth day, what Oklahoma teacher walkout means for students," 12 Apr. 2018

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


12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for hoop


Middle English, from Old English hōp; akin to Middle Dutch hoep ring, hoop

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Dictionary Entries near hoop





hoop ash

hoop back

hoop dance

Statistics for hoop

Last Updated

23 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hoop

The first known use of hoop was in the 12th century

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More Definitions for hoop



English Language Learners Definition of hoop

: a circular object : a large ring

: a large metal ring used for holding together the sides of a barrel

: a large ring used by performers or for play


\ˈhu̇p, ˈhüp\

Kids Definition of hoop

1 : a circular figure or object an embroidery hoop

2 : a circular band used for holding together the strips that make up the sides of a barrel or tub

3 : a circle or series of circles of flexible material (as wire) used for holding a woman's skirt out from the body

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Comments on hoop

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


full of whispering sounds

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