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[jook-boks] /ˈdʒukˌbɒks/
a coin-operated phonograph, typically in a gaudy, illuminated cabinet, having a variety of records that can be selected by push button.
Also called juke.
Origin of jukebox
1915-20; juke2 (joint) + box1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for jukebox
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Thoughtfully sipping my beer I heard him dial and report a jukebox out of order.

    Cue for Quiet Thomas L. Sherred
  • While Harry was drawing the beer I walked string straight to the jukebox, clicked in a quarter, and stalked back to the barstool.

    Cue for Quiet Thomas L. Sherred
  • I told her the jukebox and the television set were out of commission and there'd be no noise she didn't make herself.

    Cue for Quiet Thomas L. Sherred
  • At Art's that night I listened with envy to the words that were used over the telephone when the jukebox gave up its ghost.

    Cue for Quiet Thomas L. Sherred
  • He pushed in through the outer and inner doors, and he heard the burst of music from the jukebox.

    The Man Who Hated Mars Gordon Randall Garrett
British Dictionary definitions for jukebox


a coin-operated machine, usually found in pubs, clubs, etc, that contains records, CDs, or videos, which are played when selected by a customer
Word Origin
C20: from Gullah juke bawdy (as in juke house brothel) + box1
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 jukebox

1937, jook organ, from jook joint "roadhouse" (1935), Black English slang, from juke, joog "wicked, disorderly," in Gullah (the creolized English of the coastlands of South Carolina, Georgia, and northern Florida), probably from Wolof and Bambara dzug "unsavory." Said to have originated in central Florida (see "A Note on Juke," Florida Review, vol. VII, no. 3, spring 1938). The spelling with a -u- might represent a deliberate attempt to put distance between the word and its origins.

For a long time the commercial juke trade resisted the name juke box and even tried to raise a big publicity fund to wage a national campaign against it, but "juke box" turned out to be the biggest advertising term that could ever have been invented for the commercial phonograph and spread to the ends of the world during the war as American soldiers went abroad but remembered the juke boxes back home. ["Billboard," Sept. 15, 1945]

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



A coin-operated record player in a restaurant, bar, etc (1930s+)

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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