an object venerated superstitiously and used as a fetish or amulet by tribal peoples of West Africa.
the magical power attributed to such an object.
a ban or interdiction effected by it.

Origin of juju

1890–95; allegedly < Hausa jūjū fetish
Related formsju·ju·ism, nounju·ju·ist, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for juju

phylactery, trinket, amulet, talisman, fetish, mascot, periapt

Examples from the Web for juju

Contemporary Examples of juju

  • Good Morning America anchor Juju Chang asked Smart how she had found the courage to testify against her captor Mitchell.

  • Juju Chang is an Emmy Award-winning journalist and news anchor for Good Morning America .

    The Daily Beast logo
    Hope After An Unspeakable Crime

    JuJu Chang

    August 27, 2010

  • Juju Chang, Deborah Roberts and Elizabeth Vargas report, while John Stossel apparently gets the hell outta there.

    The Daily Beast logo
    Beyond Ryan Seacrest

    Nicole Ankowski

    December 28, 2008

Historical Examples of juju

British Dictionary definitions for juju



an object superstitiously revered by certain W African peoples and used as a charm or fetish
the power associated with a juju
a taboo effected by a juju
any process in which a mystery is exploited to confuse people
Derived Formsjujuism, nounjujuist, noun

Word Origin for juju

C19: probably from Hausa djudju evil spirit, fetish
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 juju

"marijuana cigarette," 1940, supposedly from reduplicated middle syllable of marijuana.


object of religious veneration among West Africans, 1860, supposedly ultimately from French joujou "toy, plaything."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper