One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A stupid, uncouth person; a lout.‘these bearded, stumbling palookas in their peasants' breeches’
lout, boor, barbarian, neanderthal, churl, clown, gawk, hulk, bumpkin, yokelView synonyms
- ‘They get called all kinds of names: tomato can, palooka, trial horse.’
- ‘Maybe it's the only reason Neo's been hanging out with an old palooka like me.’
- ‘And frankly, a palooka Rollins is: covered head to toe with tattoos and belching metallic tales of power run amok and self-sufficiency.’
- ‘The other type of palooka is more difficult to recognize, but more valuable - the stooge.’
- ‘Unless they're all palookas from the South Side, the writers come from leafy suburbs; and that loading zone behind the shopping center is not an alley.’
- ‘Should the two palookas with the hardware be in cahoots or feeling underpaid, they would have loved to learn of the $11,000 in traveller's checks, $1, 000 camera, credit card, and Canadian passport I was packing.’
- ‘The 20-something Reeve who shot to fame in the first Superman movie was an attractive man - much handsomer than the block-jawed palooka of the original comic books.’
- 1.1US dated An inferior or average prizefighter.‘he was just another palooka trying to muscle in on the fight racket’
- ‘Tyson was the palooka in his last fight, knocked out by Danny Williams in the fourth round last July 30.’
- ‘It's not that Buchanan doesn't make any good points; in any melee, any palooka with a wild swing is bound to land a punch or two.’
- ‘And then there was a big, brawling, pockmarked palooka with tight curly hair and a big gut whose huge, ham-hock hands relentlessly pounded his victims into total, abject submission.’
- ‘One boxer has plenty of pop, can hit bad pitches, and is a fun at-bat, while the other is your average palooka with a wood stick.’
- ‘Like the palooka who pulls himself up off the canvas after each knockdown, the dedicated employee is expected never to waver, no matter what battering he takes.’
- ‘Relegated to fighting palookas in tiny towns, he was asked to tape a 10-second promotion for a local TV station in Florida.’
1920s: of unknown origin.
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