[ noun poot-on, -awn; adjective poot-on, -awn ]
/ noun ˈpʊtˌɒn, -ˌɔn; adjective ˈpʊtˈɒn, -ˈɔn /
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an act or instance of putting someone on.
a prank or pretense, especially one perpetrated or assumed in mock seriousness; hoax; spoof.
affected manner or behavior; pretentiousness.
assumed, feigned, pretended, or disguised: a put-on manner that didn't fool anyone.
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Origin of put-on
1855–60; adj., noun use of verb phrase put (someone) on
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use put-on in a sentence
European Hemiptera have been dealt with in numerous papers by A. Puton.
British Dictionary definitions for put-on
verb (tr, mainly adverb)
to clothe oneself into put on a coat
(usually passive) to adopt (an attitude or feeling) insincerelyhis misery was just put on
to present or stage (a play, show, etc)
to increase or addshe put on weight; the batsman put on fifty runs before lunch
to cause (an electrical device) to function
(also preposition) to wager (money) on a horse race, game, etche put ten pounds on the favourite
(also preposition) to impose as a burden or levyto put a tax on cars
cricket to cause (a bowler) to bowl
put someone on
- to connect (a person) by telephone
- slang to mock or tease
noun put-on slang, mainly US and Canadian
a hoax or piece of mockery
an affected manner or mode of behaviour
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
Other Idioms and Phrases with put-on
Clothe oneself with, as in I put on my socks. [Mid-1400s]
Apply, activate, as in He put on the brakes. [Mid-1700s]
Assume affectedly, pretend to, as in He put on a British accent. This idiom is sometimes put as put it on, as in He's not really asleep; he's putting it on. [Late 1600s; late 1800s]
put someone on. Tease or mislead another, as in I don't believe you! You're putting me on. [Slang; mid-1900s]
Add to, gain, as in Please put this on our bill, or I've put on some weight.
Cause to be performed, produce, as in I hear they're putting on Shakespeare this summer. [Late 1800s]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.