hoop·​la | \ ˈhü-ˌplä How to pronounce hoopla (audio) , ˈhu̇- How to pronounce hoopla (audio) \

Definition of hoopla

: to-do also : ballyhoo

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Did You Know?

In French, the interjection houp-là is used roughly the same way as English's upsy-daisy or whoops-a-daisy, as one might say when picking up a child. (This usage can be found in English, too, in such works as Booth Tarkington's The Magnificent Ambersons and James Joyce’s Ulysses.) In the early 20th century, the word, playing on the syllable hoop, gave its name to a ring-toss game played at carnivals. But before that, hoopla was used in American English to refer to a kind of bustling commotion, and later, as a term for sensationalist hype.

Examples of hoopla in a Sentence

Many people have grown tired of all the hoopla surrounding the opening of the new theater. for all of the hoopla, very little news emerged from the governor's press conference

Recent Examples on the Web

For three days, whatever the Angels did or did not accomplish on the field took a backseat to the hoopla of Pujols’ first game at Busch Stadium since signing a decade-long contract with the Angels in December 2011. Maria Torres, latimes.com, "Angels beat Cardinals to conclude Albert Pujols’ emotional return to St. Louis," 23 June 2019 For example, all those folks coming into town for the hoops hoopla effectively drove away other tourists, either by virtue of hotel rooms being booked or just folks who don’t want to deal with crowds that weekend. Dave Orrick, Twin Cities, "NCAA Final Four: How many people came, and how much did they spend? (And did it beat the Super Bowl?)," 25 June 2019 Developers and city officials gathered Wednesday, amid much hoopla, to break ground for Pearl Pointe, a complex of 184 units that will be built by Peron Development. Jan Hefler, Philly.com, "Burlington City hopes to spark a rebirth with luxury riverfront apartments," 13 June 2018 Holloway will have little time to be swept up in the hoopla. Edgar Thompson, orlandosentinel.com, "UF track star Grant Holloway vies for national titles for himself and Gators," 4 June 2019 There has been a bit of a hoopla in the news over a class-action lawsuit brought against Ford claiming that the new 2019 Ford Ranger fails to meet fuel-economy expectations set in advertising. K.c. Colwell, Car and Driver, "What Kind of Fuel Economy Does the 2019 Ford Ranger Get in the Real World?," 13 May 2019 But years ago, May Day was celebrated with nearly the same springy hoopla on the first of the month, year after year. Jessica Leigh Mattern, Country Living, "Do You Remember May Basket Day?," 30 Apr. 2019 There hasn’t been this much hoopla over a return since Gen. Douglas MacArthur waded ashore at the Philippines. David Whitley, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Tiger Woods 2.0 deserves respect, not adoration," 3 Apr. 2018 Loose silhouettes and large hoopla earrings gave the collection a confident swagger — a little like the 28-year-old wunderkind designer Simon Porte Jacquemus himself. Thomas Adamson, The Seattle Times, "Dior and Gucci theatrically kick off Paris Fashion Week," 24 Sep. 2018

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

1877, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for hoopla

French houp-là, interjection

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Last Updated

19 Jul 2019

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The first known use of hoopla was in 1877

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English Language Learners Definition of hoopla

chiefly US, informal + usually disapproving : talk or writing that is designed to get people excited about and interested in something

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Comments on hoopla

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


appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

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