adjective, yel·low·er, yel·low·est.
- designating or pertaining to an Asian person or Asian peoples.
- designating or pertaining to a person of mixed racial origin, especially of black and white heritage.
- (of a newspaper, book, etc.) featuring articles, pictures, or other content that is sensational, especially morbidly or offensively so: yellow rags; yellow biographies.
- dishonest in editorial comment and the presentation of news, especially in sacrificing truth for sensationalism, as in yellow journalism; yellow press.
verb (used with or without object)
Origin of yellow
Synonyms for yellow
Related Words for yellow journalismsensationalism
Word Origin for yellow journalism
Word Origin for yellow
"sensational chauvinism in the media," 1898, American English, from newspaper agitation for war with Spain; originally "publicity stunt use of colored ink" (1895) in reference to the popular Yellow Kid" character (his clothes were yellow) in Richard Outcault's comic strip "Shantytown" in the "New York World."
"to become yellow," Old English geoluwian, from the source of yellow (adj.). Related: Yellowed; yellowing.
Old English geolu, geolwe, from Proto-Germanic *gelwaz (cf. Old Saxon, Old High German gelo, Middle Dutch ghele, Dutch geel, Middle High German gel, German gelb, Old Norse gulr, Swedish gul "yellow"), from PIE *ghel- "yellow, green" (see Chloe).
Meaning "light-skinned" (of blacks) first recorded 1808. Applied to Asiatics since 1787, though the first recorded reference is to Turkish words for inhabitants of India. Yellow peril translates German die gelbe gefahr. Sense of "cowardly" is 1856, of unknown origin; the color was traditionally associated rather with treachery. Yellow-bellied "cowardly" is from 1924, probably a rhyming reduplication of yellow; earlier yellow-belly was a sailor's name for a half-caste (1867) and a Texas term for Mexican soldiers (1842, based on the color of their uniforms). Yellow dog "mongrel" is attested from c.1770; slang sense of "contemptible person" first recorded 1881. Yellow fever attested from 1748, American English (jaundice is a symptom).
Inflammatory, irresponsible reporting by newspapers. The phrase arose during the 1890s, when some American newspapers, particularly those run by William Randolph Hearst, worked to incite hatred of Spain, thereby contributing to the start of the Spanish-American War. Newspapers that practice yellow journalism are called yellow press.