Definition of showboat in English:



  • 1(in the US) a river steamer on which theatrical performances are given.

    • ‘I thought that given a better part he could have fulfilled the promise he showed but not as the stereotyped gambler with a heart, which has so littered the American musical scene since Gaylord Ravenal applied for a job on a showboat.’
    • ‘The show tells of the fortunes, and misfortunes, of Magnolia, the daughter of the owner of the showboat and her gambler husband Gaylord Ravenal.’
    • ‘Back in the days of showboats (when people in most nooks and crannies of the nation were familiar with Shakespeare, however crudely presented) one impresario wintered his four-boat fleet here.’
    • ‘City officials have inspected tourist showboats in recent months after it was discovered the boats were releasing untreated waste into the ocean.’
    • ‘The webpage also provides access to additional entertainment and leisure experiences; anything from a Cher concert, a Harbour Bridge climb, water rafting or a romantic majestic cruise on a Sydney showboat.’
    • ‘With fighting, trash-talking, cursing, and endzone dances strictly prohibited, the only type of player not welcome in the USFTL is a showboat.’
    • ‘Many Barth obsessions creep up here, among them Maryland's Chesapeake River, the Arabian Nights, Noah's Ark and even a showboat named the Original Floating Opera II.’
    • ‘Before the Civil War, there was definitely an American river of that name, and steamboats, including showboats like the one commanded by Commodore Jackson, could navigate the river.’
    1. 1.1North American informal A show-off; an exhibitionist.
      ‘he's neither a show-off nor a showboat’
      • ‘Like all good things, or at least like all bleach-streaked showboats, he can't last forever.’
      • ‘Indeed, I'm a bit suspicious of ‘inspiring’ clerics since usually that means they are showboats who are trying to wrench the focus away from Christ and onto themselves.’
      • ‘During his NATO days, the studious soldier struck many officers as a showboat.’
      • ‘The job isn't to be a showboat or an original, in those situations - it's to serve the voice of the magazine, or the TV show.’
      • ‘He's been called, variously, a showboat, a stud, a lazybones, a workhorse, a whiner, a powerhouse, an overachiever, an underachiever, you name it.’
      • ‘But he's running the risk he'll be remembered more as a showboat than one of the better wide receivers of his time.’
      boaster, brag, bragger, show-off, blusterer, trumpeter, swaggerer, poser, poseur, poseuse, peacock, egotist, self-publicist
      View synonyms


[NO OBJECT]North American
  • Show off.

    ‘a lot of showboating politicians’
    • ‘While he is off showboating as ‘Archbishop of New York,’ Daily is content to go by the unassuming title of Bishop of Brooklyn.’
    • ‘He likes death-wish powerboating, ballooning at stratospheric altitudes and showboating for the cameras in fancy dress with scantily-clad hired women.’
    • ‘He was young and handsome yet modest: He did not showboat in front of the camera and he was unassuming around his colleagues here at the UN press club.’
    • ‘I couldn't believe how quickly my instincts came back; I was as slick with the trackball as ever, even showboating a tad when possible.’
    • ‘And how would the United captain have responded to him showboating and losing possession, allowing Norwich to go up the other end and double their lead?’
    • ‘And look, you can keep showboating for the cameras, but we made clear what our views are.’
    • ‘Sweden are showboating now, passing the ball around while running down the clock.’
    • ‘‘The Bull’ made it a fight with Harrison occasionally showboating after being hit.’
    • ‘Why knock someone who at least is playing the game and not showboating?’
    • ‘I showboated and he knocked me down with a stiff left.’
    • ‘They voice their concern that Jordan won't stop showboating when they're filming her.’
    • ‘Sure, the Ravens still won the game, but any time you see a player who is showboating get shown up, it's a good day.’
    • ‘‘It's not our nature to showboat or to take credit,’ she continues.’
    • ‘It doesn't get much better than this and in the middle of the second half the England players could begin showboating.’
    • ‘When the over-confident Ricky starts showboating, Bobby knocks him for a loop.’
    • ‘The talk was about knockdown pitches thrown to hitters who had showboated after hitting home runs.’
    • ‘How many knew or worried about their dead relatives' organs until they were stirred up by showboating politicians, chancing lawyers, and medical crusaders?’
    • ‘And look at her, showboating for the cameras.’
    • ‘A natural athlete, he made up for it by showboating in his favorite sports: skateboarding and surfing.’
    • ‘The snap had momentarily been drained from Hatton's punches though, and Vilches was gaining confidence, as he occasionally showboated and puffed out his chest in a sign of machismo, in a way that only South Americans know how.’