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or haha, ha ha

[hah-hah, hah-hah] /ˈhɑˈhɑ, ˌhɑˈhɑ/
interjection, noun
(used as an exclamation or representation of laughter, as in expressing amusement or derision.)
Compare haw-haw.
Origin of ha-ha1
before 1000; Middle English, Old English; of imitative origin


[hah-hah] /ˈhɑˌhɑ/
1705-15; < French haha repetitive compound based on ha! exclamation of surprise Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for ha-ha
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • This was done, and that portion of the wall is called the 'ha-ha!'

  • Harold leaped from the edge of the ha-ha where he had been sitting and held up his hand.

    The Man Bram Stoker
  • ha-ha is the name of the province in which Mogador is situated; it is also the name of the tribe.

    Mogreb-el-Acksa R. B. Cunninghame Graham
  • For some minutes they thus remained, looking down into the ha-ha.

    The Small House at Allington

    Anthony Trollope
  • Oh, Bernard, I should so like to see you rolled down into the bottom of the ha-ha.

    The Small House at Allington

    Anthony Trollope
  • Who were to dispose themselves within the ha-ha, and who without?

    Barchester Towers

    Anthony Trollope
  • A figure sprang from the caldron, alighting on the board with a loud "ha-ha."

    Carnival Compton Mackenzie
  • What is that in the meadow, creeping along beneath the ha-ha, Katherine?

    Rossmoyne Unknown
  • Then a general "ha-ha" rose from the rebel pickets, and good nature was restored.

    In The Ranks R. E. McBride
British Dictionary definitions for ha-ha


/ˈhɑː ˈhɑː/
a representation of the sound of laughter
an exclamation expressing derision, mockery, surprise, etc


/ˈhɑː hɑː/
a wall or other boundary marker that is set in a ditch so as not to interrupt the landscape
Word Origin
C18: from French haha, probably based on ha! ejaculation denoting surprise
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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Word Origin and History for ha-ha

also haha, used of laughter since ancient times; cf. Old English ha ha, Greek ha ha, Latin hahae. A different attempt at representation is in py-hy (1580s).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for ha-ha



: even made a ha-ha pass at him/ ha-ha candles made to look like penises


A joke; something funny; stroke of wit: That's a ha-ha all right

Related Terms

the merry ha-ha

[1940s+; ha-ha represented the sound of laughter by 1000]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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