hoot

1 of 3

verb

hooted; hooting; hoots

intransitive verb

1
: to shout or laugh usually derisively
2
: to make the natural throat noise of an owl or a similar cry
3
: to make a loud clamorous mechanical sound

transitive verb

1
: to assail or drive out by hooting
hooted down the speaker
2
: to express or utter with hoots
hooted their disapproval

hoot

2 of 3

noun

1
: a sound of hooting
especially : the cry of an owl
2
: a minimum amount or degree : the least bit
don't give a hoot
3
: something or someone amusing
the play is a real hoot
hooty adjective

hoot

3 of 3

interjection

variants or hoots
chiefly Scotland
used to express impatience, dissatisfaction, or objection

Examples of hoot in a Sentence

Verb We could hear an owl hooting in the woods. I hooted at the car in front of me. The crowd booed and hooted when it was announced that the show was canceled. The crowd hooted its disapproval. The speaker was hooted off the platform by a small group of protesters. Noun The announcement was met with hoots of derision. the courtroom erupted in hoots of laughter upon hearing the witness's sarcastic retort to the lawyer's arrogant remark See More
Recent Examples on the Web
Verb
He has been heard hooting from rooftops and water towers across the Upper West Side, sometimes calling out into the post-midnight darkness for hours to establish his territory and possibly woo a mate. Ed Shanahan, New York Times, 2 Feb. 2024 An total audience of more than 90,000 will hoot and holler for Garth Brooks as the country music star plays, count ’em, six shows at Sleep Train Arena. Chris MacIas and Tim Swanson, Sacramento Bee, 31 Jan. 2024 So of course all 300 of these middle-aged women are hooting and hollering and carrying on. Christian D'andrea, The Enquirer, 17 Jan. 2024 Noseda maintained a keen sense of order, and the orchestra was impressively crisp and clean — perhaps a little too clean, as any break in the action seemed to invite outbursts of hooting applause. Michael Andor Brodeur, Washington Post, 12 Jan. 2024 And Chase’s contemporaries did not hoot: Congress passed legislation in 1870 that set some procedures for Section 3 disqualifications. Amy Davidson Sorkin, The New Yorker, 12 Dec. 2023 Which means, at least for now, that Flaco will continue to hoot around for all to see. Curbed, 21 Feb. 2023 Many years later, Feinstein was hooted in her hometown for the sin of hoping that the no-class President Trump would get his act together. George Skelton, Los Angeles Times, 2 Oct. 2023 So, pull your boots on and get ready to hoot and holler while cowboys and cowgirls take off on their best rides. Anna Mahan, Country Living, 10 Sep. 2023
Noun
His anecdotes about Bubbles, Jackson’s famous chimp, his bird, and his snake are a hoot. Lily Moayeri, SPIN, 29 Jan. 2024 The red car was a hoot; the blue car was a total handful at anything like full power. Michael Teo Van Runkle, Ars Technica, 17 Nov. 2023 My brother seemed to think the whole thing was a hoot. Junot Díaz, The New Yorker, 30 Oct. 2023 The economics profession values economists for being able to translate observable reality into elegant mathematical equations, which the rest of us don’t care two hoots about. Timothy Noah, The New Republic, 16 Oct. 2023 The solution laid in the deep hoots of this common North American bird. Rachel Feltman, Popular Science, 16 Aug. 2023 By all means, tap Degen for some Greek wine recommendations (her descriptions are a hoot) and stick around for the ethereal milk pudding speckled with vanilla bean paste and scented with orange blossom water. Tom Sietsema, Washington Post, 25 Sep. 2023 Some respond with hoots, others clap their encouragement. Adam Tschorn, Los Angeles Times, 14 Sep. 2023 Ava DuVernay’s latest feature, Origin, made a major splash at the Venice Film Festival on Wednesday, earning a nine-minute standing ovation and hoots of appreciation as the curtain came down on its world premiere. Alex Ritman, The Hollywood Reporter, 6 Sep. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'hoot.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Verb

Middle English houten, of imitative origin

Interjection

origin unknown

First Known Use

Verb

13th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Interjection

1540, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of hoot was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near hoot

Cite this Entry

“Hoot.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hoot. Accessed 22 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition

hoot

1 of 2 verb
1
: to utter a loud shout usually of scorn
2
: to make the characteristic call of an owl or a similar sound
3
: to drive out by hooting
hooter noun

hoot

2 of 2 noun
1
: a sound of hooting
especially : the call of an owl
2
: a very small amount
don't care a hoot
3
: an amusing person or thing

More from Merriam-Webster on hoot

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!