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noun Theater.
  1. (especially in vaudeville) a performer made up in blackface and using a stereotyped black dialect.
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Origin of hambone

1850–55; ham1 + bone; cf. ham2
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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Examples from the Web for hambone

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • The first thing Hambone did was to go to the back of the wagon for the jar.

    S.O.S. Stand to!

    Reginald Grant

  • Reynolds did as directed and Hambone ducked for cover and the wagon stood stock still.

    S.O.S. Stand to!

    Reginald Grant

  • Our glee was positively fiendish next day when watching Hambone wriggling uneasily in his clothes at parade.

    S.O.S. Stand to!

    Reginald Grant

  • A minute or two elapsed and no explosion taking place, Hambone rejoined the wagon and the party proceeded.

    S.O.S. Stand to!

    Reginald Grant

  • They'd rather fight en a yaller dawg likes fo' to worry a hambone.

    Isle o' Dreams

    Frederick F. Moore

Word Origin and History for hambone


1855, "bone of a ham," from ham (n.1) + bone (n.). Meaning "inferior actor or performer" is from 1893, an elaboration of ham (n.2).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper