kill·​joy ˈkil-ˌjȯi How to pronounce killjoy (audio)
: one who spoils the pleasure of others

Examples of killjoy in a Sentence

I don't want to sound like a killjoy, but shouldn't we study tonight? his perpetually negative attitude made him a real killjoy when others were trying to have fun
Recent Examples on the Web Nobody wants to be the killjoy that pokes holes in the joke-makers’ stories of themselves. Lesley Goldberg, The Hollywood Reporter, 5 June 2023 With all the effort that goes into taking care of your lawn, watching the grass be ruined by your pet’s urine can be a killjoy. Stephanie Osmanski, Better Homes & Gardens, 1 June 2023 Alas, the gloomy revival by Lincoln Center Theater — complete with a killjoy Aaron Sorkin rewrite — isn’t one of those times. Peter Marks, Washington Post, 14 Apr. 2023 Not to be a killjoy, but your bi-weekly happy hour could also be interfering with your goals. Women's Health, 24 Apr. 2023 The new limit on pickoff throws also will facilitate more risk-taking and base-stealing by runners – a fan favorite that has been discouraged as low yield in recent years by the killjoys in the data analytics suite. David Axelrod, CNN, 1 Apr. 2023 If the killjoy owners can stay out of the way, baseball could be in position to prosper, based on the results of an Ipsos poll released Thursday. Bill Shaikin, Los Angeles Times, 2 Mar. 2023 Not to be a killjoy. Dan Neil, WSJ, 1 Jan. 2021 She’s the office killjoy who adores Templeton (Dee), the officer from another precinct who is gunning for Emily’s job. Joe Otterson, Variety, 31 Oct. 2022

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

Word History

First Known Use

1776, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of killjoy was in 1776

Dictionary Entries Near killjoy

Cite this Entry

“Killjoy.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


kill·​joy ˈkil-ˌjȯi How to pronounce killjoy (audio)
: a person who spoils the pleasure of others

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