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banana skin

the soft outer covering of a banana
(informal) something unforeseen that causes an obvious and embarrassing mistake
Word Origin
sense 2 from the common slapstick joke of a person slipping after treading on a banana skin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Examples from the Web for banana skin
Historical Examples
  • Some careless youngster had thrown a banana skin on the walk.

    Sure Pop and the Safety Scouts

    Roy Rutherford Bailey
  • I heard of an old man who slipped on a banana skin and broke his leg.

    The Story of the Big Front Door Mary Finley Leonard
  • I've been down there to look, and--and the banana skin was there--all mashed.

    The Second Violin Grace S. Richmond
  • Anyway, if my feet had slipped it would have been on a different orange peel or banana skin.

    A Yankee in the Far East George Hoyt Allen
  • There was Myra who treated lovers like dogs and would slap them across the face with a banana skin to show her utter independence.

  • The monkey jumped down, and, snatching a banana skin, absorbed itself in picking it to shreds industriously.

    Almayer's Folly Joseph Conrad
  • I am walking on a street and slip on a banana skin, and in falling, knock down a passing pedestrian.

    Commercial Law

    Samuel Williston, Richard D. Currier, and Richard W. Hill
  • He was as polite, though, as a book agent, and as smooth as the business side of a banana skin.

    Shorty McCabe Sewell Ford
  • Lift one section of a banana skin, remove fruit, fill with any desired salad and replace section of skin.

    Games For All Occasions Mary E. Blain
  • Miss Kinross laid down her banana skin and rose to her feet, rapidly disarmed.

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