Definition of po-faced in English:



  • Humorless and disapproving.

    ‘don't be so po-faced about everything’
    • ‘While our po-faced American cousins talk in learned terms of David's ‘high art’, we taunt the illusionist with bacon sandwiches and try to cut off his water supply.’
    • ‘It takes that understanding and throws it back in our faces, challenging us to participate in what is really a sustained assault on the cult of po-faced victimology and its politically correct excesses.’
    • ‘That's disappeared in recent years - the Dalton films were very po-faced and they've had trouble shaking that seriousness off.’
    • ‘Normally po-faced and formal, these parties give the girls their only chance of social interaction, which for them means dancing like mad and giggling at the ineptitude of their partners.’
    • ‘It is all probably sensible advice, but if you are an anxious parent you will be able to look after your kids already, and if you don't care then a po-faced web site isn't going to make a difference.’
    • ‘In the British press at least, there is a tradition of publishing spoof articles in as po-faced a fashion as possible on April 1st and seeing how many people fall for them.’
    • ‘Any social commentary is mostly of the exactly-what-it-says-on-the-tin variety and is ultimately po-faced and humourless.’
    • ‘These East Africans have a healthy, smart, informed scepticism and the media manages to remain admirably po-faced when dealing with delicate political issues.’
    • ‘It assumes a cultural context where prejudices such as homophobia are understood, and where laughter becomes a weapon to be used against them, as well as against the po-faced extremes of political correctness.’
    • ‘The downside is that all we have here is a very long, very po-faced, mystic, pseudo-religious battle between our old mates good and evil.’
    • ‘It's not just the tedium of the job - literally a daily grind, as they mash packets of powder into useable paint - it's the po-faced seriousness with which everyone around them gets on with things.’
    • ‘What a depressing lack of sense too from this increasingly po-faced Government, which displayed once more its desire to interfere, to have something to say about everything.’
    • ‘Watching a po-faced segment where a schoolgirl is falsely led to believe her parents have died from heroin abuse in an attempt to ward her off drugs elicits a mixed response.’
    • ‘Whilst it could be argued that it is po-faced to talk about truth in the biography of a fictional character, the counter-argument is that the constant toying with fiction and fact is ultimately frustrating.’
    • ‘They can be slightly po-faced affairs and often there will be slightly mental or self-obsessed people in the audience who ask strange or self-aggrandising questions.’
    • ‘So it goes with the po-faced and utterly humourless 911.’
    • ‘Returning to his point about some punk bands being too po-faced to pogo or even crack a smile, ironically he reckons that the punk scene could do with unfolding its arms and letting its hair down.’
    • ‘Would I have been too po-faced to fancy them at 18?’
    • ‘The thing that really grates, though, is the po-faced sermonising on global warming and heavy-handed attempts to make Serious Points about Serious Issues.’
    • ‘We imposed it, in our po-faced, disciplinarian way, on our colonial subjects around the world, and they loved it so much that they are still using it, long after we've gone.’
    demure, proper, prim and proper, formal, stuffy, strait-laced, prudish
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1930s: perhaps from British slang po chamber pot influenced by poker-faced.