bogeyman

or bo·gy·man

[ boog-ee-man, boh-gee-, boo- ]
/ ˈbʊg iˌmæn, ˈboʊ gi-, ˈbu- /

noun, plural bo·gey·men.

an imaginary evil character of supernatural powers, especially a mythical hobgoblin supposed to carry off naughty children.

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Also boog·ey·man or boog·ie·man [boog-ee-man, boo-gee-]; /ˈbʊg iˌmæn, ˈbu gi-/; South Midland and Southern U.S., boog·er·man [boog-er-man, boo-ger-] /ˈbʊg ərˌmæn, ˈbu gər-/ .

Origin of bogeyman

First recorded in 1885–90; bogey1 (variant of bogy1, in the sense “a hobgoblin, evil spirit”) + man
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for bogeyman

British Dictionary definitions for bogeyman

bogeyman
/ (ˈbəʊɡɪˌmæn) /

noun plural -men

a person, real or imaginary, used as a threat, esp to children
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