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play hooky

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Be absent from school or some other obligation without permission, as in It was such a beautiful day that Herb played hooky from work. In this term, the noun hooky may have come from the phrase hook it, meaning “escape.” [Mid-1800s]

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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.

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