Punchinello

[ puhn-chuh-nel-oh ]
/ ˌpʌn tʃəˈnɛl oʊ /

noun, plural Pun·chi·nel·los, Pun·chi·nel·loes.

a grotesque or absurd chief character in a puppet show of Italian origin: the prototype of Punch.
any similarly grotesque or absurd person or thing.

QUIZZES

DO YOU KNOW THIS VOCABULARY FROM "THE HANDMAID'S TALE"?

"The Handmaid's Tale" was required reading for many of us in school. Everyone else has probably watched the very popular and addictive TV show. Do you remember this vocabulary from the book, and do you know what these terms mean?
Question 1 of 10
decorum

Origin of Punchinello

1660–70; < Italian (Naples dial.) polecenella character in the puppet show, diminutive of polecana turkey-cock chick < Late Latin pullicēnus, derivative of Latin pullus pullet
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Example sentences from the Web for punchinello

British Dictionary definitions for punchinello

Punchinello
/ (ˌpʌntʃɪˈnɛləʊ) /

noun plural -los or -loes

a type of clown from Italian burlesque or puppet shows, the prototype of Punch
(sometimes not capital) any grotesque or absurd character

Word Origin for Punchinello

C17: from earlier Polichinello, from Italian (Neapolitan dialect) Polecenella, from Italian pulcino chicken, ultimately from Latin pullus young animal
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