wiener

[ wee-ner ]
/ ˈwi nər /

noun

QUIZZES

DON’T VACILLATE! VANQUISH THIS WORD OF THE DAY QUIZ!

It’d be a real faux pas to miss this quiz on the words from August 3–9, 2020!
Question 1 of 7
What does “vacillate” mean?
Also wie·ner·wurst [wee-ner-wurst, -woorst]. /ˈwi nərˌwɜrst, -ˌwʊərst/.

Origin of wiener

1865–70, Americanism;<German, short for Wiener Wurst Viennese sausage

Definition for wiener (2 of 2)

Wiener
[ wee-ner ]
/ ˈwi nər /

noun

Norbert, 1894–1964, U.S. mathematician: pioneer in cybernetics.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

ABOUT THIS WORD

What does wiener mean?

A wiener is a type of sausage. Wiener is also used as slang for “penis” and as a mild insult for someone seen as weak and awkward.

Where does wiener come from?

The word wiener, often misspelled as weiner, entered English around 1865–70, shortened from the German phrase Wiener Wurst, which roughly translates to “Vienna sausage.” Wiener literally means “of Vienna” and is pronounced like [ vee-nuh ]  in German. There is some debate about whether the sausages were invented in Vienna, Austria, or in Frankfurt, Germany, but it’s generally agreed that they traveled to the United States with German immigrants. Hot dogs are sometimes called wieners or weiner dogs today, and in Rhode Island, they are referred to as hot wieners.

Due to their phallic appearance, it didn’t take long for the word wiener to become a slang reference to the penis. By the early 1900s, when hot dogs had become a popular food in the U.S., English speakers were already using wiener as a euphemistic or childish slang term for the penis.

As a slang term, it can also be used as an insult for someone, usually a young man, seen as wimpy and awkward—like the slang dork.

The dachshund breed of dogs are often called wiener dogs due to their sausagelike shape. Similarly, hot dogs themselves are sometimes called dachshund sandwiches.

How is wiener used in real life?

Some adults (especially parents) and children will use wiener in speech and writing as a euphemistic substitute for the penis.

Calling a person a wiener or weenie (i.e., a wimp or dork) can be considered mildly offensive. Calling a hotdog a wiener, while it still has some currency, may cause some confusion—or snickers. Dachshunds, however, commonly go by wiener dog; a 2016 film about the breed was even titled this.

Keep in mind that Wiener (and Weiner) are also common surnames.

More examples of wiener:

“’Please tell me you don’t already have a little wiener,’ she says as she hands him a small hot dog, stunning him into momentary silence.”

—Tia (The Bachelor contestant), quoted by Lauren Piester, December 2017

Example sentences from the Web for wiener

British Dictionary definitions for wiener (1 of 2)

wiener

wienerwurst (ˈwiːnəˌwɜːst)

/ (ˈwiːnə) /

noun

US and Canadian a kind of smoked beef or pork sausage, similar to a frankfurterAlso called: wienie, weenie (ˈwiːnɪ)

Word Origin for wiener

C20: shortened from German Wiener Wurst Viennese sausage

British Dictionary definitions for wiener (2 of 2)

Wiener
/ (ˈwiːnə) /

noun

Norbert (ˈnɔːbət). 1894–1964, US mathematician, who developed the concept of cybernetics
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