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[hey-seed] /ˈheɪˌsid/
grass seed, especially that shaken out of hay.
small bits of the chaff, straw, etc., of hay.
an unsophisticated person from a rural area; yokel; hick.
Origin of hayseed
First recorded in 1570-80; hay + seed Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for hayseed
Historical Examples
  • “Damned if I will––hayseed,” he retorted with a meaning pause and accent.

  • I allow you to—er—ornament my tree, and 'tain't every hayseed I'd let do that.'

    Cape Cod Stories Joseph C. Lincoln
  • An' no jollyin' nor green money would change that hayseed's mind.

    Shorty McCabe Sewell Ford
  • He lives on hayseed,—everywhere he's found, But in the country he does most abound.

    A Phenomenal Fauna Carolyn Wells
  • Only a word now an' then about a farmer—an' somethin' about hayseed.

    The Panchronicon Harold Steele Mackaye
  • They think I'm a hayseed and won't have nothin' to do with me.

  • We did not care for sight-seeing, and the pastimes of the hayseed mind.

    Wanted: A Cook Alan Dale
  • Grass don't grow down, and go where you will, you'll find the hayseed at the top.

  • There was no hayseed in his brain; there were no flies on his intellect.

  • Oregon peach-bloom on your cheeks, too; Ill wager you are just in from the farm, you hayseed.

    An Oregon Girl Alfred Ernest Rice
British Dictionary definitions for hayseed


seeds or fragments of grass or straw
(US & Canadian, informal, derogatory) a yokel
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 hayseed

1570s in the literal sense of "grass seed shaken out of hay," from hay + seed (n.). In U.S. slang sense of "comical rustic" it dates from 1875. To have hayseed in (one's) hair was a common mid-19c. way in U.S. to indicate a country person.

The opinion of the court was delivered by Justice Hunt; the chief justice, in whose hair the Ohio hayseed still lingers, delivering a dissenting opinion (etc.) ["The Chronicle," New York, Nov. 12, 1874]

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



Rural; provincial: The bad actors perform worse plays in hayseed theaters


(also hayseeder)A farmer; country person: There's still a lot of hayseed in Senator Chance (1888+)

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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