- a stupid person; dunce.
- a gannet of the genus Sula, having a bright bill, bright feet, or both: some are endangered.
Origin of booby1
- a female breast.
Origin of booby2
Examples from the Web for boobies
Historical Examples of boobies
The eggs are chalky white and cannot be distinguished from those of the other Boobies.The Bird Book
Chester A. Reed
In the morning about daybreak they arrived safely in the "Land of Boobies."
All the boys vied with each other in taking places in his coach, to be conducted to the "Land of Boobies."
- an ignorant or foolish person
- British the losing player in a game
- any of several tropical marine birds of the genus Sula : family Sulidae, order Pelecaniformes (pelicans, cormorants, etc). They have a straight stout bill and the plumage is white with darker markingsCompare gannet
Word Origin for booby
1590s, from Spanish bobo "stupid person, slow bird" (used of various ungainly seabirds), probably from Latin balbus "stammering," from an imitative root (see barbarian).
Booby prize is by 1883: an object of little value given to the loser of a game; booby trap is 1850, originally a schoolboy prank; the more lethal sense developed during World War I.
At the end of every session the dominie had the satirical custom of presenting his tawse as a "booby-prize" to some idle or stupid lout whom he picked out as meriting this distinction so that next time they met he might start fresh and fair with new pair for a new set of classes. [Ascott R. Hope, "Dumps," "Young England" magazine, 1883]