Boston Tea Party

noun American History.
  1. a raid on three British ships in Boston Harbor (December 16, 1773) in which Boston colonists, disguised as Indians, threw the contents of several hundred chests of tea into the harbor as a protest against British taxes on tea and against the monopoly granted the East India Company.

Origin of Boston Tea Party

An Americanism dating back to 1825–35
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for boston tea party

Boston Tea Party

noun
  1. US history a raid in 1773 made by citizens of Boston (disguised as Indians) on three British ships in the harbour as a protest against taxes on tea and the monopoly given to the East India Company. The contents of several hundred chests of tea were dumped into the harbour
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 boston tea party

Boston tea party

took place on Dec. 16, 1773; seems to have been so-called by 1824. See tea party.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

boston tea party in Culture

Boston Tea Party

An act of defiance toward the British government by American colonists; it took place in 1773, before the Revolutionary War. The government in London had given a British company the right to sell tea directly to the colonies, thereby undercutting American merchants. A group of colonists found a ship in the harbor of Boston that was loaded with the company's tea. They dressed as Native Americans, boarded the ship, and threw hundreds of chests of tea overboard. The British government then tried to punish the colonists by closing the port of Boston, but this move only intensified American resistance to the rule of the king.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.