Definition of peekaboo in English:


(also peek-a-boo)


mass noun
  • A game played with a young child, which involves hiding and suddenly reappearing, saying ‘peekaboo’.

    • ‘Playing peek-a-boo with toys helps teach infants about object permanence - the understanding that an object has not disappeared permanently just because it isn't visible now.’
    • ‘The infant guidelines involve a parent or caregiver planning physical activity with a variety of baby games, such as peekaboo and pat-a-cake, and sessions in which the child is held, rocked, and carried to new environments.’
    • ‘He loves to play peek-a-boo, and he can wave bye-bye and blow kisses to his mom when she goes to work.’
    • ‘I passed Connie off to her sisters, and we kept her occupied doing various things (playing with the dogs, playing peek-a-boo, etc.).’
    • ‘The prospect of playing peek-a-boo didn't excite me.’
    • ‘I play peek-a-boo with the person opposite; now you see me, now you don't.’
    • ‘Laughing and playing peekaboo on the settee with his mother, Sidney pretends to be shy but then turns on a radiant smile for the camera.’
    • ‘In his idle hours, he played peek-a-boo with the children and read them books.’
    • ‘He was a very happy child who was always cooing and I used to make him laugh by playing peek-a-boo with him on the corner of the sofa.’
    • ‘It begins as a baby when we hide behind our hands and play peek-a-boo.’
    • ‘Or maybe he just likes the way the book comes, with little holes in it that you can stick your fingers through or play peek-a-boo with.’
    • ‘Jesse was playing peek-a-boo through crib bars.’
    • ‘‘This little girl is the best kind of inspiration I can possibly have here,’ he said while playing peek-a-boo with his only child, Abigail.’
    • ‘Your child's doctor might ask if your child is playing peek-a-boo, pulling himself up in the crib, or reaching for a bright object when he's on the floor, for example.’
    • ‘The little girl was standing on the seat and peering over the top, playing peek-a-boo and pulling silly faces at the two friends.’
    • ‘I would stay up late at night watching movies with the 5th graders, chase around the toddlers, and play peekaboo with the infants.’
    • ‘Then Abi came over and played peek-a-boo with him behind the plexiglass bubbles.’
    • ‘Toddlers, led by their parents, play peek-a-boo with the stationary tanks from behind their father's legs.’
    • ‘He stopped playing peekaboo or wanting to walk.’
    • ‘Is there anything better than playing peekaboo with a baby?’


  • 1attributive (of a garment) made of transparent fabric or having a pattern of small holes.

    ‘a black lace peekaboo dress’
    • ‘During the course of the movie, Love's character slowly becomes less abrasive and cocksure and, as a handy visual aid, her dress sense shifts from sizzling peekaboo to preppy casualwear.’
    • ‘In the very first episode, however, T.J. is shown clearing out as soon as his roommate arrives on the scene wearing those peekaboo pants.’
    • ‘Yokes and sleeves are obvious choices for a peek-a-boo look, and for evening or vacation wear, consider a midriff inset in a seductive sheer or demure lace.’
    • ‘‘This hot pink dress has a snug-fitting top, a flowing bottom for easy movement, and a peek-a-boo back for sex appeal.’’
    • ‘Fragonard's famously teasy painting of The Swing is re-created with the addition of a tribal peekaboo dress.’
    • ‘The ruffled hem envelops the legs, and the lace-up peekaboo slit traces the curve of the waist, adding shape to an already sensuous silhouette.’
    • ‘For a casual night out for the society girl-on-the-go, his red mohair plaid strapless dress with peek-a-boo velvet bow and mini pouf hem detailing of pleated lace and tulle sets the right tone for the evening.’
    • ‘The most daring offering includes garments that hug the body and peekaboo necklines that show off the décolletage.’
    • ‘He tapped his nose and said, ‘Look after him’ to the grey girl with peek-a-boo underwear.’
    • ‘Models showed off the latest collection from her best-selling LK line, including fabulous fishnets and peek-a-boo suspenders.’
    • ‘Then there's the peekaboo, fuchsia dress widely circulated in paparazzi shots in cyberland.’
    • ‘Samuel's lilac suit features a peek-a-boo organza strip that cuts away from the linen it's made from.’
    1. 1.1 (of a hairstyle) concealing one eye with a fringe or wave.
      • ‘Many Cancers love peek-a-boo hairstyles that flow and move like a silken drape of hair.’
      • ‘The short peekaboo has softened her look, but you wonder how it was ever perceived as hard in the first place.’


Late 16th century: from peek + boo.