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hokum

[hoh-kuh m]
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noun
  1. out-and-out nonsense; bunkum.
  2. elements of low comedy introduced into a play, novel, etc., for the laughs they may bring.
  3. sentimental matter of an elementary or stereotyped kind introduced into a play or the like.
  4. false or irrelevant material introduced into a speech, essay, etc., in order to arouse interest, excitement, or amusement.
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Origin of hokum

1915–20, Americanism; probably blend of hocus-pocus and bunkum
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for hokum

banality, bromide, platitude, sweet, hokum, falsehood, fraud, trickery, duplicity, hypocrisy, betrayal, untruth, deceit, mendacity, treachery, lying, disinformation, stereotype, tag, flatness

Examples from the Web for hokum

Historical Examples of hokum

  • Senator Gonzales was fond of the Society's crackpot receptionist, and he knew exactly what kind of hokum would please her most.

    Psichopath

    Gordon Randall Garrett

  • Ye see, Hokum he got thirty-seven cents' worth o' lemons and sperit.

    Oldtown Fireside Stories

    Harriet Beecher Stowe


British Dictionary definitions for hokum

hokum

noun slang
  1. claptrap; bunk
  2. obvious or hackneyed material of a sentimental nature in a play, film, etc
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Word Origin for hokum

C20: probably a blend of hocus-pocus and bunkum
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 hokum

n.

1917, theater slang, "melodramatic, exaggerated acting," probably formed on model of bunkum (see bunk (2)), and perhaps influenced by or based on hocus-pocus.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper