ja·lopy | \jə-ˈlä-pē \
plural jalopies

Definition of jalopy 

: a dilapidated old vehicle (such as an automobile)

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Synonyms for jalopy


beater, clunker

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Examples of jalopy in a Sentence

He fixed up an old jalopy. his parents gave him an old jalopy for school

Recent Examples on the Web

Although some residents have jalopies (and sometimes one will come with a rental house), the way to get around is on a bike, a golf cart or your own two feet. Alison Humes, WSJ, "Summer Getaways That You Don’t Need To Sweat Over," 28 June 2018 Every Jaguar and jalopy in L.A. is left parked at its destination, usually taking up more public real estate than would 10 electric scooters in a row. Conor Friedersdorf, The Atlantic, "Fly On, My Sleek Electric Bird," 30 May 2018 But the regime’s bigger problem is that investors who kick the tires on the Castro jalopy increasingly walk away. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Cuba Gets a Castro Convertible," 22 Apr. 2018 This is an organization that paints an old jalopy in opposing team’s colors, parks it in front of the arena, and then asks fans for a $5 charitable contribution to swing at it with a sledgehammer. Kevin Allen, USA TODAY, "Predators' playoff celebration promises to be 'bigger and better than last year'," 12 Apr. 2018 There ought to be graphics of a junkyard of jalopies: Look, there's the ghost of Virginia right there. Chuck Culpepper, chicagotribune.com, "Nevada is the unkillable zombie of the NCAA tournament's haunted graveyard region," 18 Mar. 2018 When a jalopy driven by the mysterious Alison (Claire van der Boom) sputters into the garage where Henry works nights with the ebullient Arthur (Delroy Lindo, excellent), a friendship — and more — develops between Alison and fellow lost soul Henry. Gary Goldstein, latimes.com, "Mixed performances set tone in Southern melodrama 'Battlecreek'," 2 Nov. 2017 Picture Dmitriev going off on a dig in his threadbare jalopy (a Niva). Jay Nordlinger, National Review, "The Grave-Hunter, Hunted," 11 Oct. 2017 But what happens when your crews are still first-rate but your spacecraft is a jalopy — like, say, the overgrown, broken-down Mir space station which, by the late 1990s, had long since passed its orbital expiration date? Jeffrey Kluger, Time, "Episode 8 of the Podcast 'Countdown': Collision in Space," 7 Sep. 2017

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

1928, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for jalopy

origin unknown

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Dictionary Entries near jalopy

jalee work







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Time Traveler for jalopy

The first known use of jalopy was in 1928

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English Language Learners Definition of jalopy

: an old car that is in poor condition


ja·lopy | \jə-ˈlä-pē \
plural jalopies

Kids Definition of jalopy

: a worn old automobile

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