One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
An uneducated and unsophisticated person from the countryside.
bumpkin, country bumpkin, country cousin, rustic, countryman, countrywoman, country dweller, daughter of the soil, son of the soil, peasant, provincial, oaf, lout, boor, barbarianView synonyms
- ‘He has a few too many disparaging references to ‘country yokels,’ and some of his remarks about women are needlessly chauvinistic.’
- ‘She confirmed my suspicions of country folk being idiotic yokels as correct.’
- ‘I told her I appreciated the vote of confidence, but I know what happens when I sit at a table of genuinely funny people, not family members and appreciative yokels: I become more solemn than Lincoln in his tomb.’
- ‘Well, guess what kids, if the beef industry goes, it's not just going to be the country yokels that are out of a job.’
- ‘People like you preach tolerance and openmindedness all the time but when it comes to middle America you think we're all evil and stupid country yokels who need your political alignment.’
Early 19th century: perhaps figuratively from dialect yokel ‘green woodpecker’.
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