Definition of joker in US English:

joker

noun

  • 1A person who is fond of joking.

    • ‘For almost all Jewish writers, the master ironist, the joker, is life itself.’
    • ‘I thought he was joking, Steve was a big joker and I thought it was something he would do,’ she said.’
    • ‘I suppose that's about where you want to end up with these guys, the half of them who are jokers, and the other half who set the jokers up.’
    • ‘‘This place is full of jokers,’ laughed the life-long United fan.’
    • ‘It's the jokers who cover over the ashes with hot pokers stemmed from their own rebuttal, sitting around the cold coal fire in my living room, bunting one another with harsh words.’
    • ‘Philosophers, like jokers may shock us by using language in eccentric ways and jumping to unexpected conclusions, but there is a vast unbridgeable gulf which you admitted right at the start.’
    • ‘It is easy to see this in the case of a tendentious joke in which the joker, by dressing up his obscene thoughts or aggressive impulses in humorous guise, is circumventing his own internal inhibitions.’
    • ‘He returns with his friend, a famous African American athlete and tells the joker, ‘Tell him your funny joke.’’
    • ‘Dirt and discomfort apart, there are the eve-teasers and jokers doing their acrobatics on the footboard who stick out as the sore-thumbs.’
    • ‘The jokers have been an integral part of circus since its advent in 1768 by Philip Astley an ex Cavalry officer in England.’
    • ‘That evening the poet returned, but he brought with him a dozen friends - writers of every sort, and painters, and thinkers, and jokers.’
    • ‘Extroverts may become withdrawn, natural jokers humourless, and placid individuals short-tempered and aggressive.’
    • ‘Of course these jokes are not just jokes; they are a joker's definition of a writer's vocation.’
    • ‘But the joke is on the joker, as any toddler could have told him.’
    • ‘Mel is the new boy, a bit of a joker.’
    • ‘The resident Surrey-based jokers, who gave two sell out performances in Epsom in November and March, have been tickling fans with a melange of bawdy songs and set pieces since they began working together two and a half years ago.’
    • ‘Anyway, you can always spot a person from Osaka as they always make bad jokes apparently - the jokers of Japan, a bit like the way that all Scousers are funny in the UK.’
    • ‘A joker to his friends up front, but a joke to everyone else.’
    • ‘A bit of a joker, Eddie has some fond memories of his time in the Home Guard.’
    • ‘Wholesome families may be fine, but jokers want to be wild.’
    humorist, comedian, comedienne, comic, funny man, funny woman, wag, wit, jester
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1informal A foolish or inept person.
      ‘a bunch of jokers’
      • ‘These jokers that have been floating around these boardrooms, they waddle off to their next cup of tea or whatever and that's it.’
      • ‘It comes from so many people's frustration about how many ways these jokers have tried to use this stuff to divide this country and manipulate it for narrow political ends.’
      • ‘What part of ‘Congress shall make no law’ don't these jokers understand?’
      • ‘Still I'm not letting any of these jokers write me any references or be character witnesses if I even get into trouble.’
      • ‘I have enough trouble finding a spare plug for the Christmas tree without going a whole month without the stereo, how do these jokers manage it?’
      • ‘And these jokers would have the nerve to say they are more civilized than me.’
      • ‘The Bahamian worker can ill afford to have union dues subtracted from the pay envelope, to support uneducated jokers who know nothing about economics, to bring the wheels of the economy to a standstill.’
      • ‘These jokers are trying to make everyone cranky and blaming it all on us.’
      • ‘Those two jokers may be happy in their never-never land, but it's time they recognised reality.’
      • ‘So most of these jokers are finding charities to give the contaminated cash to.’
      • ‘In the veritable fashion parade, which goes on, teachers are jokers and the butt of all pranks.’
      • ‘The response is lukewarm: the youth prefer Net jokes to messages from what they call the bunch of jokers.’
      • ‘These jokers deserve to go out of business, the sooner the better.’
      • ‘The playlist, as you would expect, is designed to please mum and dad, the women in the hairdressing salon and the jokers hard at work at the service station.’
      • ‘Now that home ownership characterizes that crowd, Microsoft employs some of those jokers.’
      • ‘Really, given the spurious arguments these jokers advance for and against the cross, this is as good a compromise as we can possibly get.’
      • ‘But the time has surely come to blow the whistle on these jokers.’
      • ‘They mocked them and saw them as jokers or losers.’
      • ‘The sense is that when you put on the shirt, you are there to do a job, and there's no space for jokers.’
      • ‘All these jokers not only want to have their cake and eat it too, but smash it in the public's face.’
      • ‘All around us, jokers and criminals rule the roost.’
      • ‘The system is designed so that you don t get jokers going for election, but it would make far more sense if I could get a petition signed or something like that.’
  • 2A playing card, typically bearing the figure of a jester, used in some games as a wild card.

    • ‘It is played with a standard deck of 52 playing cards, plus two jokers.’
    • ‘Silly me, I forgot that every deck has two jokers.’
    • ‘New players may wonder what is the purpose of using a different tile as the joker for each game.’
    • ‘The first player to collect all four sevens wins. [There are no jokers in this game.]’
    • ‘When played as the High Card, jokers rank as aces.’
    • ‘Players may agree before the game begins that the jokers will be worth 50 points rather than 25.’
    • ‘Note that the jokers and the trump rank cards count as belonging to the trump suit.’
    • ‘You Need: 2 decks of regular playing cards with jokers per person.’
    • ‘Face cards and the joker disqualify a player from dealing first.’
    • ‘You can also make a meld consisting entirely of wild cards - twos and jokers.’
    • ‘If it is a 9,8 or 7, a game of null is played without trumps, but the jokers are the highest cards of the suit of the drawn card.’
    • ‘If joker and other wild cards combine in one hand you have killed all wild cards.’
    • ‘In the US, sure, we had the occasional wild card on kid's TV, but man, you guys seemed to have a deck stacked with jokers. you guys seemed to have a deck stacked with jokers.’
    • ‘However we play that if the highest card is a wild card or joker then the ‘real card’ will win.’
    • ‘Secondly, the only true works of art in regular playing card, are face cards the jokers and the ace of spades.’
    • ‘The joker is a wild card which can be used only as an ace, or to complete a straight, a flush or a straight flush.’
    • ‘The values of the individual cards are as follows: The twos and jokers are wild cards.’
    • ‘Wild cards Twos and jokers are wild and can be used in any set or run to represent any desired card.’
    • ‘The game requires two 52 card decks with jokers, and either a different color poker chip for each player or a different size coin.’
    • ‘Some people also use jokers as wild cards, which can represent any rank.’
  • 3US A clause unobtrusively inserted in a bill or document and affecting its operation in a way not immediately apparent.

    • ‘‘That joker is our intellectual property,’ says George White, USPC vice-president.’

Phrases

  • the joker in the pack

    • A person or factor likely to have an unpredictable effect on events.

      • ‘Newer ones are there and as usual I am the joker in the pack by being my own worst enemy, but those are minor niggles that can always be worked out between good friends.’
      • ‘But to my mind, the joker in the pack remains the possibility of a local Benguela El Nino.’
      • ‘But watch the joker in the pack (the Democratic and independent vote in California).’
      • ‘He has transformed the Boks from the joker in the pack of world rugby to the ace.’
      • ‘Though clearly not a man lacking in depth of character, he has come to be recognised as the joker in the pack in the Irish camp,’
      • ‘Cathy Weber draws on her love of the intricate workings of the natural world while Larry Pirnie is the joker in the pack, with an expressive style which mixes yesterday's fantasies and today's realities in a whimsical manner.’
      • ‘‘We stayed in Folkestone and David Holt and Steve Taylor were the jokers in the pack,’ he said.’
      • ‘Denmark's centre-right Dansk Folkeparti, the joker in the pack, made huge gains in last year's elections, winning 22 seats in the 179-seat parliament, but its views are less extreme than those of its European counterparts.’
      • ‘Completing the line-up is Aroyo, the joker in the pack, who talks about their shared sense of humour as being like a ‘donkey-powered comedy train’.’
      • ‘I've always been an extrovert, the joker in the pack,’ he admits.’

Pronunciation

joker

/ˈjōkər//ˈdʒoʊkər/