Definition of puppet in English:



  • 1A movable model of a person or animal that is used in entertainment and is typically moved either by strings controlled from above or by a hand inside it.

    • ‘Little Stevie plays with his strings and paper puppets he made himself.’
    • ‘There is effective use of puppets and perspective with the library stairs, and some clever lighting effects and physical comedy.’
    • ‘Youngsters can read and listen to stories with their parents and then act them out using puppets and soft toys.’
    • ‘The string puppets of Tamil Nadu are the largest and the heaviest when compared to the string puppets of the other State.’
    • ‘In Admiralty Square three puppets in a puppet theatre come to life: Petrushka, the Ballerina, and the Moor.’
    • ‘Bunraku puppets are not manipulated by strings from above a small stage window.’
    • ‘The film doesn't attempt to pretend that these aren't puppets, their strings are integral to who they are and are a key part of the story.’
    • ‘In some cases, large animal puppets are completely made of celluloid because of its greater stiffness.’
    • ‘In fact, puppets and strings play no part in the show, which instead uses lights to help project the duo's efforts on to a large screen.’
    • ‘The result is that one puppeteer can control multiple puppets in multiple mediums.’
    • ‘The puppeteer sits in back of a white screen and moves the puppets to act out stories.’
    • ‘He stuck five of them inside the puppet's head to operate it by hand.’
    • ‘From shadow puppets to puppets on a string, the emphasis this year is on visual theatre.’
    • ‘We believe in the puppet as a completely separate entity from the puppeteer.’
    • ‘Stick a washed lolly stick to the back of the card and use it to move the puppet around.’
    • ‘If you have puppets or stuffed animals, make a little play and use very, very silly voices.’
    • ‘His innovative use of string puppets and model special effects made the series a huge hit.’
    • ‘The critics at Bombay Dreams all mentioned the fountain scene, for The Lion King it was the amazing effects and animal puppets.’
    • ‘Names are written on masking tape which is placed inside the puppets for easy identification.’
    • ‘Well-crafted in every aspect, the tale of Pinocchio is told using puppets and live actors, in mask or out.’
    marionette, glove puppet, hand puppet, finger puppet, rod puppet, shadow puppet
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1A person, party, or state under the control of another person, group, or power.
      ‘he was little more than a puppet of his aides’
      • ‘Again, the elastic smile. She felt like a puppet whose mouth strings were being pulled.’
      • ‘He refused to sell his soul to the powers, he refused to be used as a puppet by those who control boxing.’
      • ‘What people don't realise is that she is not just a puppet on a string.’
      • ‘They yanked on her chains forcing her to bend and twist at their will like a puppet on strings.’
      • ‘Heads would bob and shoulders would shake like puppets on strings under Goldfrapp's control.’
      • ‘He could see the malevolent grin upon her lips as she snarled up at the man that was a puppet upon her strings.’
      • ‘It is about leading one's own life. It is about not being the puppet or the slave of the choices and desires of others.’
      • ‘He also wrote an autobiographical novel in the cruel and sentimental manner: characters as puppets on a string.’
      • ‘Why did fate like to toy with their puppet strings so often, taking joy to their misery?’
      • ‘He was like a puppet without strings now, just sitting there, staring out the window.’
      • ‘Stars exploded in his vision and he collapsed like a puppet with the strings cut.’
      • ‘Nicholas is just a pawn, a puppet for Wilson and that is just a temporary situation until Wilson is ready to strike.’
      • ‘She was remembering how he had played her like a rag puppet being controlled by strings.’
      • ‘They pose like Barbie dolls (sometimes literally) or puppets with strings broken.’
      • ‘One by one, each of the guards fell to their knees and then down on their faces like puppets with their strings cut.’
      • ‘In the end, we all have to ask, are we simply puppets whose strings are being pulled by unseen forces?’
      • ‘In this role, they often seemed like puppets on the strings of price.’
      pawn, tool, instrument, cat's paw, poodle, creature, hostage, counter, cog, dupe
      View synonyms


Mid 16th century (denoting a doll): later form of poppet, generally having a more unfavorable connotation.