wife·​beat·​er ˈwīf-ˌbē-tər How to pronounce wifebeater (audio)
plural wifebeaters
: a ribbed tank top that is sometimes worn as an undershirt
She is barefoot and casually dressed, smoking Newports, in red capri-length Dickies with a red and white belt, a white wifebeater that says HURLEY and a black hoodie that says HARLEY-DAVIDSON …Jesse Sheidlower
Ripped young men in wifebeaters and equally buff young women in bikinis …William Finnegan

Word History


from the stereotypical association of such shirts with men who abuse their wives

First Known Use

1994, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of wifebeater was in 1994

Dictionary Entries Near wifebeater

Cite this Entry

“Wifebeater.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wifebeater. Accessed 24 Apr. 2024.

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