noun, plural hoo·doos.

bad luck.
a person or thing that brings bad luck.
Geology. a pillar of rock, usually of fantastic shape, left by erosion.

verb (used with object), hoo·dooed, hoo·doo·ing.

to bring or cause bad luck to.

Origin of hoodoo

1870–75, Americanism; apparently var of voodoo
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for hoodoo

bedevil, bewitch, hex, curse, damn, charm, enchant, condemn

Examples from the Web for hoodoo

Contemporary Examples of hoodoo

Historical Examples of hoodoo

  • But Rockland had a pitcher who more than once proved a hoodoo for Camden.

    Frank Merriwell's Cruise

    Burt L. Standish

  • Well, if this hasn't been a hoodoo cruise from Boston, I don't know a thing!

    Frank Merriwell's Cruise

    Burt L. Standish

  • "Tell us a story about a hoodoo, Uncle Jonah," Hortense begged.

  • If it didn't go it was a hoodoo—a black shadow—and he wanted no more to do with it.

    Jennie Gerhardt

    Theodore Dreiser

  • There's got to be an end to this hoodoo business in my house.

    The Faith Healer

    William Vaughn Moody

British Dictionary definitions for hoodoo


noun plural -doos

a variant of voodoo
informal a person or thing that brings bad luck
informal bad luck
(in the western US and Canada) a strangely shaped column of rock

verb -doos, -dooing or -dooed

(tr) informal to bring bad luck to
Derived Formshoodooism, noun

Word Origin for hoodoo

C19: variant of voodoo
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 hoodoo

"one who practices voodoo," 1870, American English, probably an alteration of voodoo. Meaning "something that causes or brings bad luck" is attested from 1880.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper