noun, often attributive
\ ˈshō-ˌȯf How to pronounce show-off (audio) \

Definition of show-off

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the act of showing off
2 : one that shows off : exhibitionist

show off

showed off; shown off or showed off; showing off; shows off

Definition of show off (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to display proudly wanted to show our new car off

intransitive verb

: to seek to attract attention by conspicuous behavior boys showing off for the girls

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Other Words from show-off


show-offy \ ˈshō-​ˌȯ-​fē How to pronounce show-offy (audio) \ adjective

Examples of show-off in a Sentence


the athletes warmed up, happily showing off for the crowd before the match officially started she just wants to show off her new jewelry

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Stand-out garments, such as a glistening multicolored circular bustier with delicate embroidered flowers, showed off both the talent of Chanel’s famed seamstresses and the promise of its newest design star. Washington Post, "Chanel’s new designer, Viard, unveils couture debut in Paris," 2 July 2019 The Rio Grande ARTway is a short section of the trail showing off Carbondale’s creativity and cultural diversity. Jeanine Barone, The Know, "Ride your bike on these Colorado railroad routes without fear of being run over by a train," 2 July 2019 And the show's knack for visual sequences (shown off in things like Eleven's pseudo-Western showdown with Mike's bullies in S1) appears intact; growing into Netflix's perhaps most important / popular series may have increased the VFX budget, too. Nathan Mattise, Ars Technica, "Stranger Things without Spoiler Things: It’s dark, different, and still delightful," 1 July 2019 The move went viral, creating a meme in which his 2020 Democratic rival New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker looked surprised at the former congressman showing off his language skills. Rebecca Morin, USA TODAY, "Some 2020 Democrats spoke in Spanish during their first debate. Was it 'Hispandering'?," 30 June 2019 Tracy Klugian, who lives in San Diego, said he was taken aback by the candidates showing off their language proficiency. Andy Borowitz, The New Yorker, "Debate Viewers Struggle with Concept of President Without Glaring Personality Disorder," 27 June 2019 The popular periodic celebrations of vegetarian and vegan cuisine give metro Detroit restaurants, food trucks and caterers a chance to show off their meat-free creations and connect with folks devoted to healthful living. Greg Crawford, Detroit Free Press, "The weekend: Golf tales from David Feherty, Balloonfest, festivals in Trenton and Taylor," 26 June 2019 The date gave Mike the opportunity to show off both his silly side and his serious side. Martha Sorren,, "Mike Johnson Should 1000 Percent Be The Next Bachelor," 25 June 2019 However, the Falcon Heavy is the only operational rocket that’s competing for these contracts, so SpaceX has a unique opportunity to show off the vehicle’s ability before everyone else. Loren Grush, The Verge, "Why the third launch of SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket has the highest stakes yet," 24 June 2019

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


1776, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1750, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Statistics for show-off

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Time Traveler for show-off

The first known use of show-off was in 1750

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More Definitions for show-off



English Language Learners Definition of show-off

informal + disapproving : a person who tries to impress other people with his or her abilities or possessions


\ ˈshō-ˌȯf\

Kids Definition of show-off

: a person who tries to impress other people with his or her abilities or possessions

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More from Merriam-Webster on show-off

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with show-off

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for show-off

Spanish Central: Translation of show-off

Comments on show-off

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to complain fretfully

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