verb (used with object)

to strike, especially with the hand; cuff.
  1. to bandage.
  2. to patch; mend.

Origin of clout

before 900; Middle English; Old English clūt piece of cloth or metal; cognate with Middle Low German klūte, Old Norse klūtr
Related formsclout·er, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for clouted

Historical Examples of clouted

  • Grey Beaver clouted him right and left to make him get up and follow.

    White Fang

    Jack London

  • At the same time, Tallis stepped from behind the door and clouted the other.

    The Highest Treason

    Randall Garrett

  • He answered, ‘His bayonet was all but into you when I clouted him over the head.’

    Our Soldiers

    W.H.G. Kingston

  • They had on their batting clothes and clouted the ball lustily.

  • One of the mahouts reached forward and clouted Rajah on the knee.

British Dictionary definitions for clouted



informal a blow with the hand or a hard object
power or influence, esp in politics
  1. the target used in long-distance shooting
  2. the centre of this target
  3. 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
  1. a piece of clotha dish clout
  2. a garment
  3. a patch

verb (tr)

informal to give a hard blow to, esp with the hand
to patch with a piece of cloth or leather
Derived Formsclouter, noun

Word Origin for clout

Old English clūt piece of metal or cloth, clūtian to patch (C14: to strike with the hand); related to Dutch kluit a lump, and to clod
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 clouted



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.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper