noun, often attributive
pup·pet | \ ˈpə-pət \

Definition of puppet 

1a : a small-scale figure (as of a person or animal) usually with a cloth body and hollow head that fits over and is moved by the hand

b : marionette

3 : one whose acts are controlled by an outside force or influence a puppet ruler

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Other words from puppet

puppetlike \ˈpə-pət-ˌlīk \ adjective

Examples of puppet in a Sentence

a dictator who was perceived as being an American puppet gave her a puppet with strings for a gift

Recent Examples on the Web

During the eight weeks of summer readings, the library will offer programs such as craft workshops, music shows, a comedy and juggling show, reptiles and amphibians, a puppet show and hip hop dance and karate workshop. Courant Community, "Community News For The Vernon Edition," 10 July 2018 The Friddle concert will start this year’s Ragdale Ring Performance Series as a jazz concert, a puppet show and a dance program are on tap in upcoming months. Daniel I. Dorfman, chicagotribune.com, "Lake Forest's Ragdale campus starts summer tours and concert series this month," 5 June 2018 Summer Reading ends on June 27 for the Coldspring Library with the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Council doing its puppet show with Leo the Drug Free Lion. Jacob Mcadams, Houston Chronicle, "SJC libraries ready to rock summer reading," 23 May 2018 There are marionette puppet shows and travel films at the Musikgarten Stage, and dance groups of all ages representing various regions of Germany performing throughout the weekend. Elaine Rewolinski, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Major summer festivals in Milwaukee in 2018; Summerfest and many more," 18 May 2018 Even the most servile propaganda puppets in the right-wing media can’t figure out a way to credibly defend that. David Zurawik, baltimoresun.com, "Trump border policy so debased even right-wing media can't defend it credibly," 19 June 2018 Observers speculated that the Great Successor was a puppet, manipulated by veterans of the ruling class, his uncle Jang Song-taek and his wife. Jamie Tarabay, CNN, "Who is Kim Jong Un? Separating myth from fact," 5 June 2018 The puppet Daniel Striped Tiger asks Lady Aberlin to blow up and deflate a balloon. Peter Keough, BostonGlobe.com, "‘Won’t You Be My Neighbor?’ is an invitation not to be passed up," 31 May 2018 McCarthy plays a law enforcement official who teams up with her ex-partner puppet to investigate a possible serial killer. David Ng, latimes.com, "'Sesame Street' sues STX film studio over Melissa McCarthy puppet movie," 29 May 2018

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

1538, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for puppet

Middle English popet youth, doll, from Middle French poupette, diminutive of *poupe doll, from Vulgar Latin *puppa, alteration of Latin pupa

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Phrases Related to puppet

glove puppet

puppet regime

Statistics for puppet

Last Updated

18 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for puppet

The first known use of puppet was in 1538

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More Definitions for puppet



English Language Learners Definition of puppet

: a doll that is moved by putting your hand inside it or by pulling strings or wires that are attached to it

: a person or an organization that is controlled by another person or organization


pup·pet | \ ˈpə-pət \

Kids Definition of puppet

1 : a doll moved by hand or by strings or wires

2 : someone or something (as a government) whose acts are controlled by another

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More from Merriam-Webster on puppet

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for puppet

Spanish Central: Translation of puppet

Nglish: Translation of puppet for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of puppet for Arabic Speakers

Comments on puppet

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to make amends

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