View synonyms for joker


[ joh-ker ]


  1. a person who jokes.
  2. one of two extra playing cards in a pack, usually imprinted with the figure of a jester, used in some games as the highest card or as a wild card.
  3. U.S. Politics. a clause or expression inserted in a legislative bill with the unavowed object of defeating the ostensible purpose of the bill if passed.
  4. a seemingly minor, unsuspected clause or wording that is put into an agreement, legal document, etc., to change its effect.
  5. an unexpected or final fact, factor, or condition that changes or reverses a situation or result completely:

    He gave her a beautiful diamond engagement ring, but the joker was that it was stolen!

  6. any method, trick, or expedient for getting the better of another:

    They pulled a joker on us to get better seats.

  7. Informal. a man; fellow; chap:

    That joker is earning twice as much as I am.

  8. a person who thinks they are very funny; prankster:

    Who's the joker who frosted the cake with shaving cream?

  9. Informal. a wise guy; wiseacre; smart aleck:

    Tell that joker to stop using my parking space.


/ ˈdʒəʊkə /


  1. a person who jokes, esp in an obnoxious manner
  2. slang.
    a person

    who does that joker think he is?

  3. an extra playing card in a pack, which in many card games can substitute for or rank above any other card
  4. a clause or phrase inserted in a legislative bill in order to make the bill inoperative or to alter its apparent effect

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Word History and Origins

Origin of joker1

First recorded in 1720–30; joke + -er 1

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Example Sentences

You started with 0 points, and as you flipped over each card your score increased by that card’s points — as long as the joker hadn’t shown up.

Several solvers, like Emma Knight, observed that if you played optimally, you flipped over the joker and scored 0 half the time.

The moment the joker appeared, the game was over and your score was 0.

In that period of time, if you think back, almost everyone was funny, had a great sense of humor, or saw themselves as a joker.

The moment the joker appears, the game is over and your score is 0.

The series also reversed a long trend that saw the character paralyzed by the Joker and confined to a wheelchair for a decade.

Smart, so smart, and darkly handsome; a practical joker, large-hearted and fun.

Besides his obsessive preparations, Leslie introduced another tool to the bank-robbing trade —“the little joker.”

All a thief had to do was take off the dial knob on the safe and place the little joker on inside of it.

The “little joker” was a small tin wheel with a wire attached to it, which fit inside the combination of any bank safe.

What joker thought that would be a good name for an exploring ship I can't imagine, but it always happens that way.

A talented cartoonist, distinguished practical joker, and recognized as one of the kings of bon mot, he led a free and easy life.

The Joker got the best bed, as good-humoured, good-natured chaps generally do, without seeming to try for it.

I was eighteen, and I had been for a long time looked upon at the lycee as a sly practical joker.

The joker appears in the third paragraphs from the end—​Fellows Syrup of Hypophosphites.