Yankee Doodle

[ dood-l ]

  1. (italics) a song with a melody of apparent British origin, popular with American troops during the Revolutionary War.

  2. a Yankee.

Words Nearby Yankee Doodle

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use Yankee Doodle in a sentence

  • A shanghi ruseter cums out, with epaulets on, and crows Yankee Doodle—musik bi the band.

    Josh Billings, Hiz Sayings | Henry Wheeler Shaw
  • I've got sound common sense instead, and that's what you don't possess, Yankee Doodle!

  • Barton humming the tune of ‘Yankee Doodle,’ to make them the better understand what we wanted.

    The Island Home | Richard Archer

British Dictionary definitions for Yankee Doodle

Yankee Doodle

  1. an American song, popularly regarded as a characteristically national melody

  2. another name for Yankee

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

Cultural definitions for “Yankee Doodle”

“Yankee Doodle”

A popular American song, dating from the eighteenth century. The early settlers of New York were Dutch, and the Dutch name for Johnny is Janke, pronounced “Yankee.” This is the most likely origin of the term Yankee. Doodle meant “simpleton” in seventeenth-century English. First sung during the American Revolutionary War by the British troops to poke fun at the strange ways of the Americans (Yankees), the song was soon adopted by American troops themselves. Since then, the song has been considered an expression of American patriotism. The popular version of the first stanza is:

Yankee Doodle came to town
Riding on a pony;
He stuck a feather in his hat
And called it macaroni.
Yankee Doodle, keep it up,
Yankee Doodle dandy;
Mind the music and the step,
And with the girls be handy.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.