sad sack

noun Slang.

a pathetically inept person, especially a soldier, who continually blunders in spite of good intentions.

Nearby words

  1. sacrotransverse position,
  2. sacrovertebral,
  3. sacrum,
  4. sad,
  5. sad case,
  6. sad tree,
  7. sad-faced,
  8. sadaqat,
  9. sadat,
  10. sadat, anwar

Origin of sad sack

after the cartoon character created in 1942 by U.S. cartoonist George Baker (1915–75)

Related formssad-sack, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for sad sack

British Dictionary definitions for sad sack

sad sack


US slang an inept person who makes mistakes despite good intentions

Word Origin for sad sack

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.

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