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sad sack

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noun Slang.
  1. a pathetically inept person, especially a soldier, who continually blunders in spite of good intentions.
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Origin of sad sack

after the cartoon character created in 1942 by U.S. cartoonist George Baker (1915–75)
Related formssad-sack, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for sad sack

sad sack

noun
  1. US slang an inept person who makes mistakes despite good intentions
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Word Origin

C20: from a cartoon character created by G. Baker, US cartoonist
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

Idioms and Phrases with sad sack

sad sack

A singularly inept person, as in Poor George is a hopeless sad sack. This term alludes to a cartoon character, Sad Sack, invented by George Baker in 1942 and representing a soldier in ill-fitting uniform who failed at whatever he tried to do. It was soon transferred to clumsily inept civilians.

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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.