zing·​er | \ ˈziŋ-ər How to pronounce zinger (audio) \

Definition of zinger

1 : something causing or meant to cause interest, surprise, or shock
2 : a pointed witty remark or retort

Examples of zinger in a Sentence

The candidate couldn't help getting off a zinger or two about his opponent.
Recent Examples on the Web In the film, most of the PBS series' core cast (and fan favorites) have returned, and with them much of the same old drama and spice (Dame Maggie Smith's zingers on the big screen? Sally Holmes, Marie Claire, "How Well Do the 'Downton Abbey' Stars Really Know Each Other?," 20 Sep. 2019 The zingers don’t disguise Stradal’s fundamentally optimistic view of human nature, a belief that people can change and virtue can be rewarded, at least sometimes. Wendy Smith, Washington Post, "In ‘The Lager Queen of Minnesota,’ two long-estranged sisters are brought together by beer," 25 July 2019 No one could have predicted the success of a show about three men trying to raise three girls ... with the wacky neighbor girl frequently popping in to deliver zingers. Andrea Barber, Good Housekeeping, "Andrea Barber Gets Real About Lori Loughlin, 'Full House' Secrets, and More in New Book," 15 Nov. 2019 Kristen Stewart, in particular, makes a private party out of every scrap of comic relief she’s given, scoring with an impressive percentage of her muttered asides and drive-by zingers. Michael Phillips, chicagotribune.com, "‘Charlie’s Angels’ review: Kristen Stewart and Elizabeth Banks update the tacky, sexualized ’70s series for 2019’s woke culture," 12 Nov. 2019 This is not about poking fun at Hitler and Nazi Germany, although there are plenty of zingers at their expense. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Review: Jojo Rabbit walks a fine line between humor and heart," 21 Oct. 2019 The film gave us so many big screen gems—a ballroom scene, a royal plot line, tons of Violet Crawley zingers. Julyssa Lopez, Glamour, "Another Downton Abbey Movie Is Reportedly in the Works—Here’s What We Know," 10 Oct. 2019 During Downton Abbey’s six seasons on the air, fans couldn’t get enough of the hilarious zingers Maggie Smith brought to each episode as Violet, the Dowager Countess. Rosy Cordero, EW.com, "The stars of Downton Abbey share their favorite Dowager Countess zingers," 19 Sep. 2019 Alec Baldwin was in the hot seat on Saturday as the man of the hour for his Comedy Central roast, which included a series of zingers from none other than his daughter, Ireland Baldwin. Rachel Desantis, PEOPLE.com, "Ireland Baldwin Hilariously Grills Dad Alec with Joke About Mom Kim Basinger at Comedy Central Roast," 8 Sep. 2019

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

1955, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of zinger was in 1955

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Last Updated

10 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Zinger.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/zinger. Accessed 21 January 2020.

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How to pronounce zinger (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of zinger

US, informal : a quick and clever comment that criticizes or insults someone

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good-natured easy friendliness

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