an exchange of light, playful, teasing remarks; good-natured raillery.

verb (used with object)

to address with banter; chaff.

verb (used without object)

to use banter.

Nearby words

  1. bant,
  2. bantam,
  3. bantam work,
  4. bantamweight,
  5. banteng,
  6. banthine,
  7. banti's syndrome,
  8. banting,
  9. banting, sir frederick grant,
  10. bantingism

Origin of banter

First recorded in 1660–70; origin uncertain

Related forms Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for banter

British Dictionary definitions for banter



to speak to or tease lightly or jokingly


light, teasing, or joking language or repartee
Derived Formsbanterer, noun

Word Origin for banter

C17: of unknown 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

Word Origin and History for banter



1670s, origin uncertain; said by Swift to be a word from London street slang. Related: Bantered; bantering. The noun is from 1680s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper