- a blow, especially with the hand; cuff: The bully gave him a painful clout on the head.
- Informal. pull; strong influence; muscle, especially political power: a wealthy campaign contributor with clout at city hall.
- Baseball. a long hit, especially an extra-base hit: A hard clout to deep center field drove in the winning run.
- the mark or target shot at, especially in long-distance shooting.
- a shot that hits the mark.
- Also called clout nail. a nail for attaching sheet metal to wood, having a short shank with a broad head.
- a patch or piece of cloth or other material used to mend something.
- any worthless piece of cloth; rag.
- an article of clothing (usually used contemptuously).
- to strike, especially with the hand; cuff.
- to bandage.
- to patch; mend.
Origin of clout
Examples from the Web for clout
The great migration to the North through World War II had given black people at least some clout as they began to vote Democratic.How Rock and Roll Killed Jim Crow
October 26, 2014
CrowdMed is also a system where Ivy League diplomas and prestigious residencies carry no clout.Strangers Diagnose Your Illness and Get Cash in Return
August 15, 2014
Entertainment institutions like the Academy have a duty to use their clout wisely.Juvenile Misogynist Seth MacFarlane Is Not Funny
June 3, 2014
So Bandar enjoyed none of the prestige or the clout that well-connected mothers bring to their sons in the Kingdom.Prince Bandar bin Sultan, Saudi Arabia’s Gatsby, Master Spy
November 16, 2013
In the Darwinian world of media and politics, hardly any primal force compares to Clinton Clout.How Team Clinton Shut Down the CNN and NBC Hillary Shows
October 2, 2013
Even an old broken bowman might find the clout with a bow like this.
"Nay, there you are wide of the clout," the bowman said gravely.
The next moment he received a clout alongside the head that knocked him over on his side.White Fang
As for the clout I gave Master Peter, here is a groat to mend it.In the Days of Drake
J. S. Fletcher
Swords are for gentlemen, while clubs are to clout the heads of rogues—thus.The O'Ruddy
- informal a blow with the hand or a hard object
- power or influence, esp in politics
- the target used in long-distance shooting
- the centre of this target
- a shot that hits the centre
- Also called: clout nail a short, flat-headed nail used esp for attaching sheet metal to wood
- British dialect
- a piece of clotha dish clout
- a garment
- a patch
- informal to give a hard blow to, esp with the hand
- to patch with a piece of cloth or leather
Word Origin and History for clout
Old English clut "lump of something," also "patch of cloth put over a hole to mend it," from Proto-Germanic *klutaz (cf. Old Norse klute "kerchief," Danish klud "rag, tatter," Frisian klut "lump," Dutch kluit "clod, lump"); perhaps related to clot (v.).
In later use "a handkerchief," also "a woman's sanitary napkin." Sense of "a blow" is from c.1400 early 14c., from the verb. Sense of "personal influence" is 1958, on the notion of "punch, force."
"to beat, strike," early 14c., from clout (n.), perhaps on the notion of hitting someone with a lump of something, or from the "patch of cloth" sense of that word (cf. clout (v.) "to patch, mend," mid-14c.). Related: Clouted; clouting.