Definition of tomfoolery in English:



  • [mass noun] Foolish or silly behaviour.

    ‘the tomfoolery of MPs at question time’
    • ‘How they intend to turn this tomfoolery into pop music is anyone's guess.’
    • ‘There will be wine tasting and outlet shopping and general drunken tomfoolery.’
    • ‘My eyes hurt and my brain creaks in protest at the muppets and their tomfoolery.’
    • ‘He's grabbed the world's attention with more of his priceless tomfoolery.’
    • ‘A bit of buffoonery and tomfoolery are always welcome after a tense high wire act, during which everyone in the audience has been holding their breath, and looking anxiously upwards, in total empathy with the performer.’
    • ‘It has been a long time since his acting style, characterised by an intensity laced with tomfoolery but never entirely dispelled by it, was celebrated or even mentioned by critics.’
    • ‘His tomfoolery is starting to reach championship levels.’
    • ‘For all the gardyloo and tomfoolery here, I do take blogs seriously.’
    • ‘He probably hid behind a lot of his tomfoolery when it came to girls.’
    • ‘A group of teenage girls whose tomfoolery led to one falling into a fast-flowing river must shoulder some blame for a man's drowning in a rescue attempt, a coroner said yesterday.’
    • ‘And those with an affinity for the silliness, slapstick, and tomfoolery of this sort of comedy will be turned off by the costumes.’
    • ‘He could spot hypocrisy, pomposity, smugness, snobbery, tomfoolery and turpitude from miles away.’
    • ‘One day, in a fit of tomfoolery, she and one of her coworker buddies dress up in a guest's expensive clothing.’
    • ‘Where it serves to obstruct learning, and remove choice, political correctness of this kind can only be considered ignorant tomfoolery.’
    • ‘She is whip smart and has a low tolerance for tomfoolery, something Ray hasn't quite figured out how to deal with - he often ends up hanging himself as he backpedals out of the latest thorny situation.’
    • ‘In fact, politics-phobes have nothing to fear: his act is as full of gleefully silly tomfoolery as it is sharp-eyed insights into the state of the world.’
    • ‘And if you work in the medical profession, you might wonder why hospitals have gone from holy places of professionals and passion to hotbeds of tomfoolery in popular culture.’
    • ‘Later that year he broke the same kneecap during tomfoolery in a Newcastle nightclub.’
    • ‘He said that for all his wise-cracks, pranks and tomfoolery on the screen, he was a ‘very serious’ person in real life.’
    • ‘But some people evidently don't see any need to join in such communal tomfoolery.’
    silliness, fooling, clowning, capering, capers, antics, pranks, tricks, buffoonery, skylarking, nonsense, horseplay, mischief, foolishness, foolery, stupidity
    messing about, messing around, larking about, larking around, larks, shenanigans
    monkey tricks
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