[ hip-hop ]
/ ˈhɪpˌhɒp /


the popular subculture of big-city teenagers, which includes rap music, break dancing, and graffiti art.


of, relating to, or characteristic of this subculture: the hip-hop generation.

Nearby words

  1. hip flask,
  2. hip hop,
  3. hip joint,
  4. hip pocket,
  5. hip roof,
  6. hip-huggers,
  7. hipaa,
  8. hipbone,
  9. hiphugger,
  10. hiphuggers

Origin of hip-hop

First recorded in 1985–90

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

British Dictionary definitions for hip hop


/ (ˈhɪpˌhɒp) /


a US pop culture movement originating in the 1980s comprising rap music, graffiti, and break dancing
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 hip hop

hip hop

also hip-hop, music style, first recorded 1982. Reduplication with vowel variation (e.g. tip-top, sing-song); OED reports use of hip hop with a sense of "successive hopping motion" dating back to 1670s. The term in its modern sense comes from its use in the early rap lyrics of the genre, notably Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five and The Sugarhill Gang in "Rapper's Delight."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Culture definitions for hip hop


Another name for rap music.


The term hip-hop also refers to the speech, fashions, and personal style adopted by many youths, particularly in urban areas.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.