[ yoh-kuhl ]
See synonyms for yokel on Thesaurus.com
  1. an unsophisticated person from a rural area; a country bumpkin.

Origin of yokel

First recorded in 1805–15; origin uncertain

Other words from yokel

  • yo·kel·ish, adjective

Words Nearby yokel

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use yokel in a sentence

  • Yet Mike Huckabee, an authentic by-his-bootstraps populist, was dismissed by the party's actual elite as a country yokel.

    Bush-Cheney 2012? | Reihan Salam | May 19, 2009 | THE DAILY BEAST
  • Hesitatingly, and like a clumsy yokel, I blurted: I have been wondering whether you cared for the performance I gave?

    The Fifth String   | John Philip Sousa
  • How can she have cared a hang for Ned, if she's ready to go and marry a yokel, for the sake of a home and respectability?

    Rhoda Fleming, Complete | George Meredith
  • Some yokel writes in the village paper, as Henley had written before, "James's stuff was not worth doing."

    Instigations | Ezra Pound
  • The yokel if he feels inclined for a sleep lies down and takes it just as the dumb creatures do.

  • For among the mud-larks he recognises one who, early in the day, offered insult to himself, calling him a “country yokel.”

    The Land of Fire | Mayne Reid

British Dictionary definitions for yokel


/ (ˈjəʊkəl) /

  1. derogatory (used chiefly by townspeople) a person who lives in the country, esp one who appears to be simple and old-fashioned

Origin of yokel

C19: perhaps from dialect yokel green woodpecker, yellowhammer

Derived forms of yokel

  • yokelish, adjective

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