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[shoh-awf, -of] /ˈʃoʊˌɔf, -ˌɒf/
a person given to pretentious display.
the act of showing off.
Origin of show-off
First recorded in 1770-80; noun use of verb phrase show off
Related forms
show-offish, adjective
1. exhibitionist, braggart. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for show-off
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Well, he'll see then that this kind of thing was all show-off, and bluff, won't he?

    Alice Adams Booth Tarkington
  • Once or twice, when I've paid calls with mamma, they were so fussy and show-off.

    Robin Redbreast Mary Louisa Molesworth
  • What a prancing, show-off, matinée fool you've made me look!

  • Does he then hang out a profession that is not true to the kernel of things, but only a show-off for impression's sake?

    Studies of Christianity James Martineau
  • She graduates and comes home and there are a lot of "doings" which she attends, then comes the show-off which is called a debut.

    Evening Round Up

    William Crosbie Hunter
  • Without that spirit of "show-off," what would induce our knights to meet in glorious tournaments?

  • I do not belittle it, since from this spirit of "show-off" arises one great good--respect for the opinion of our fellow-man.

  • So Max, with a dash of "show-off" in his disposition, laughed at Yolanda's fears and answered that he was in no danger.

  • Many a man builds a grand house for a show-off, when he has verra little to support it.

    The House with the Green Shutters

    George Douglas Brown
Word Origin and History for show-off

1776, "a display;" see show (v.) + off (adv.). From 1801 as "a deliberate and ostentatious display;" in reference to the person who makes such a display, attested from 1924. The verbal phrase is first recorded 1793 as "make a conspicuous and obvious display." Noun showing-off is from 1874.

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



A person who habitually shows off; hot dog, showboat: Speedo swimsuit and a globe tied to his shoulder. Show-off

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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