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90s Slang You Should Know


[jos-uh l] /ˈdʒɒs əl/
verb (used with object), jostled, jostling.
to bump, push, shove, brush against, or elbow roughly or rudely.
to drive or force by, or as if by, pushing or shoving:
The crowd jostled him into the subway.
to exist in close contact or proximity with:
The three families jostle each other in the small house.
to contend with:
rival gangs continually jostling each other.
to unsettle; disturb:
The thought jostled her complacency.
Slang. to pick the pocket of.
verb (used without object), jostled, jostling.
to bump or brush against someone or something, as in passing or in a crowd; push or shove (often followed by with, for, or against):
He jostled for position.
to exist in close contact or proximity with someone or something.
to compete; contend.
Slang. to pick pockets.
a shock, push, bump, or brush against someone or something.
Also, justle.
Origin of jostle
1350-1400; variant (in Middle English, variant spelling) of justle, equivalent to just(en) to joust + -le
Related forms
jostlement, noun
jostler, noun
unjostled, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for jostle
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • They jostle against women, each made charming, even the ugliest of them, by the black lace kerchief tied about her head.

    Alas! Rhoda Broughton
  • Some folk will answer that life itself settles all that, with its jostle and bustle.

    Laurus Nobilis Vernon Lee
  • They may be so unlike and incommensurable, and so inert towards one another, as never to jostle or interfere.

  • Singularly, the circle parted right and left in a jostle and a scramble.

    Desert Dust Edwin L. Sabin
  • The balloon made little progress, and the wind seemed as though unwilling to jostle its precious burden.

  • He did not seem to wear well with the people in the daily run and jostle of life.

    In Our Town William Allen White
  • How rudely the greedy babies push and jostle one another to get the most dinner, and how noisily they clamour for it!

  • Well; we, in trifling with this jingling toy, have had the ill-luck to jostle and fall out.

    Barnaby Rudge Charles Dickens
  • There she happened to jostle a lieutenant, who, not recognising her, ventured on a protest.

    The Magnificent Montez Horace Wyndham
British Dictionary definitions for jostle


to bump or push (someone) roughly
to come or bring into contact
to force (one's way) by pushing
the act of jostling
a rough bump or push
Derived Forms
jostlement, noun
jostler, noun
Word Origin
C14: see joust
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 jostle

1540s, justle, "to knock against," formed from jousten (see joust) + frequentative suffix -tle. The usual spelling 17c.-18c. was justle. An earlier meaning of the word was "to have sex with" (c.1400). Meaning "to contend for the best position or place" is from 1610s. Related: Jostled; jostling. As a noun from c.1600.

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



To pick pockets: a junkie vocation known as ''jostling''/ always looking for cats who were down there jostling (1929+)

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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