Word of the Day : November 14, 2016

hoke

play
verb HOHK

Definition

: to give a contrived, falsely impressive, or hokey quality to — usually used with up

Did You Know?

Hoke is a back-formation of hokum, which was probably created as a blend of hocus-pocus and bunkum. Hokum is a word for the theatrical devices used to evoke a desired audience response. The verb hoke appeared in the early 20th century and was originally used (as it still can be today) when actors performed in an exaggerated or overly sentimental way. Today, it is often used adjectivally in the form hoked-up, as in "hoked-up dialogue." The related word hokey was coined soon after hoke to describe things that are corny or phony.


Examples

"Its okay that everybody looks great, though certain scenes seem hoked up. A black cat crossing the path of a motorcade about to explode feels more like Hollywood moviemaking than truth telling…." — D.J. Palladino, The Santa Barbara Independent, 10 Jan. 2013

"'Concussion' has the sober, patient earnestness of a lawyer preparing a major case—it's a dramatization of true events and occasionally hoked up in the finest Hollywood tradition, but it wants to stir you into being convinced instead of the other way around." — Ty Burr, The Boston Globe, 25 Dec. 2015



Test Your Vocabulary

Fill in the blanks to create an adjective that can mean "produced by humans rather than by natural forces" or "produced by special effort": fa _  _ iti  _ u _.

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