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[hoop, hoo p; especially for 1, 3, 4, 6–12 hwoop, hwoo p, woop, woo p] /hup, hʊp; especially for 1, 3, 4, 6–12 ʰwup, ʰwʊp, wup, wʊp/
a loud cry or shout, as of excitement or joy.
the sound made by a person suffering from whooping cough.
verb (used without object)
to utter a loud cry or shout in expressing enthusiasm, excitement, etc.
to cry as an owl, crane, or certain other birds.
to make the characteristic sound accompanying the deep intake of air following a series of coughs in whooping cough.
verb (used with object)
to utter with or as if with a whoop.
to whoop to or at.
to call, urge, pursue, or drive with whoops:
to whoop dogs on.
(used as a cry to attract attention from afar, or to show excitement, encouragement, enthusiasm, etc.)
Verb phrases
whoop up, Informal. to promote or praise; extol:
a class reunion where they whoop up the good old days.
not worth a whoop, Informal. to be worthless:
Their promises aren't worth a whoop.
whoop it up, Informal.
  1. to raise a disturbance, as to celebrate noisily:
    They whooped it up after winning the big game.
  2. to stir up enthusiasm, as for an idea or project:
    Every spring they whoop it up for the circus.
Origin of whoop
1350-1400; Middle English whopen, Old English hwōpan to threaten; cognate with Gothic hwopan to boast Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for whoop
Contemporary Examples
  • In a spontaneous act of call and response, we all whoop and start clapping back, united by euphoria.

    Subway Euphoria Jessi Klein November 5, 2008
Historical Examples
  • It was the Indian whoop, which her father had taught her in their woodland rambles at home.

    The Green Satin Gown Laura E. Richards
  • But I think some of these people must have gone out of their minds to whoop it up so.

  • For every whoop of the Hurons, the Iroquois give an angry yell of defiance.

  • It was terrible to leap and whoop and whistle; her very soul revolted.

    The Very Small Person Annie Hamilton Donnell
  • All of the Emily gang set up a whoop of joy, and 'twas answered from the yacht.

    Cape Cod Stories Joseph C. Lincoln
  • At half-past seven you heard the whoop of the milkman and the rattling of his cans.

  • Then you trust me to whoop up her heroism and the fact that without her he would have died.

    Keziah Coffin Joseph C. Lincoln
  • Couldn't seem to raise a real loud whisper, let alone a whoop.

    The Portygee Joseph Crosby Lincoln
  • Just then a whoop rang out from the braves at the gap and was followed by a chorus of them.

    Two Arrows William O. Stoddard
British Dictionary definitions for whoop


to utter (speech) with loud cries, as of enthusiasm or excitement
(med) to cough convulsively with a crowing sound made at each inspiration
(of certain birds) to utter (a hooting cry)
(transitive) to urge on or call with or as if with whoops
(informal) whoop it up (wʊp; wuːp)
  1. to indulge in a noisy celebration
  2. (US) to arouse enthusiasm
a loud cry, esp one expressing enthusiasm or excitement
(med) the convulsive crowing sound made during a paroxysm of whooping cough
(informal) not worth a whoop, worthless
See also whoops
Word Origin
C14: of imitative origin
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 whoop

mid-14c., houpen, partly imitative, partly from Old French houper "to cry out," also imitative. It is attested as an interjection from at least mid-15c. The noun is recorded from c.1600. Extended form whoopee is attested from 1845, originally American English; whoopee cushion is attested from 1960. Phrase whoop it up "create a disturbance" is recorded from 1884. Expression whoop-de-do is recorded from 1929. Whooping cough (1739) is now the prevalent spelling of hooping cough; whooping crane is recorded from 1791.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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whoop in Medicine

whoop (hōōp, hwōōp, wōōp)
The paroxysmal gasp characteristic of whooping cough.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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