[ eyt-bawl ]
/ ˈeɪtˌbɔl /


  1. a black ball bearing the number eight.
  2. a game in which one player or side must pocket all of either the solid-color balls or the striped ones before being permitted to attempt the pocketing of the eightball, which wins.
Slang. an inept person.

Nearby words

  1. eiger,
  2. eight,
  3. eight ball,
  4. eight-spot,
  5. eight-track tape,
  6. eighteen,
  7. eighteen-wheeler,
  8. eighteenmo,
  9. eighteenth,
  10. eighteenth amendment


    behind the eightball, Informal. in a difficult, disadvantageous, or uncomfortable situation: He hasn't studied all term, and now he's behind the eightball.

Origin of eightball

An Americanism dating back to 1930–35; eight + ball1

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019