Definition of horseplay in US English:



  • Rough, boisterous play.

    • ‘We spent hours at this horseplay in the snow that winter.’
    • ‘There are excuses: which one of us would happily challenge a group of teenagers - and who is to judge what is horseplay and what is more sinister?’
    • ‘Mr Hedley, of Carr Meadow, says he hopes the incident is not treated as merely high jinks or horseplay.’
    • ‘First Mainline, which runs 670 buses in the district, said that young people had not heeded warnings about horseplay following the death of a 13-year-old boy earlier this year.’
    • ‘When he stands up and defends himself, well, that's when it turns from just some maybe horseplay to the flicking of the arm to the violent confrontation.’
    • ‘The defendants, who had pleaded guilty to racially aggravated harassment at earlier hearings, have maintained that they were not racially motivated and believed the actions to be horseplay.’
    • ‘Of course, these insights were only revealed in between the necessary mad, frenetic spurts of brotherly horseplay.’
    • ‘Well, Lou, there are about 1,000 images altogether, but we're told that many of them are innocuous, pictures of innocent horseplay and just snapshots.’
    • ‘Blame, expostulations, recriminations and horseplay - David provides an up-close-and-personal document of the family's most wrenchingly private moments.’
    • ‘There are exceptions to this rule, and even violence intentionally inflicted will not be a criminal offence if it occurs in the course of a lawful activity, such as contact sports, surgical operations, rough horseplay or tattooing.’
    • ‘Why is horseplay limited to boys in our culture?’
    • ‘Teachers ‘thought it was horseplay,’ and the boy never told his parents he was being bullied.’
    • ‘Any horseplay and you'll be back in second-period study hall so fast your head will spin.’
    • ‘His equally fatigued colleague Park Hong-Seok, however, opted for some horseplay with his three children.’
    • ‘Practical jokes and horseplay frequently resulted in angry altercations between men on the factory floor.’
    • ‘Indeed, they are also taking on the role of the uncle or auntie, ticking off youngsters who are indulging in a spot of horseplay in the street.’
    • ‘Children especially need the room to run and play without having to worry about annoying other guests with screams, horseplay and of course, the occasional temper tantrum.’
    • ‘‘The actions are not simple fun and horseplay and can only lead to suffering and perhaps the death of someone in your own community,’ he said.’
    • ‘The scenes of fighting and horseplay among the Montagues and Capulets compelled the story forward, with swords clashing in time to the music.’
    • ‘Fourthly, why is rough and undisciplined horseplay, where serious injuries may be sustained by victims whose consent must be seriously in doubt, included in the list of exceptions?’
    fooling around, foolish behaviour, clowning, fooling, tomfoolery, buffoonery
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