[ eyt-bawl ]

  1. Pool.

    • a black ball marked with the number eight.

    • 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.

  2. Slang. an inept person.

Idioms about eightball

  1. 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

Words Nearby eightball

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

British Dictionary definitions for eight ball

eight ball

nounUS and Canadian
  1. (in pool) the black ball, marked with the number eight

  2. behind the eight ball in a difficult situation; snookered

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