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1. The act of using words, gestures, images, or other products of expression to evoke laughter or contemptuous feelings regarding a person or thing: a remark that invited the ridicule of his classmates.
2. The words or other products of expression used in this way: was subjected to a torrent of ridicule.
tr.v. rid·i·culed, rid·i·cul·ing, rid·i·cules
To expose to ridicule; make fun of.

[French, from Latin rīdiculum, joke, from neuter of rīdiculus, laughable; see ridiculous.]

rid′i·cul′er n.
Synonyms: ridicule, mock, taunt1, deride
These verbs refer to making another the butt of amusement or mirth. Ridicule implies purposeful disparagement: "My father discouraged me by ridiculing my performances" (Benjamin Franklin).
To mock is to poke fun at someone, often by mimicking and caricaturing speech or actions: "the bear ... [devoured] the children who mocked God's servant Elisha for his baldness" (Garrison Keillor).
Taunt suggests mocking, insulting, or scornful reproach: "taunting him with want of courage to leap into the great pit" (Daniel Defoe).
Deride implies scorn and contempt: "Was all the world in a conspiracy to deride his failure?" (Edith Wharton).


language or behaviour intended to humiliate or mock; derision
(tr) to make fun of, mock, or deride
[C17: from French, from Latin rīdiculus, from rīdēre to laugh]
ˈridiˌculer n


(ˈrɪd ɪˌkyul)

n., v. -culed, -cul•ing. n.
1. speech or action intended to cause contemptuous laughter; derision.
2. to make fun of.
[1665–75; < Latin rīdiculum a joke <rīdēre to laugh]
rid′i•cul`er, n.
syn: ridicule, deride, mock, taunt mean to make fun of a person. To ridicule is to make fun of, either playfully or with the intention of humiliating: to ridicule a pretentious person. To deride is to laugh at scornfully: a student derided for acting silly. To mock is to make fun of by imitating another: She mocked his surprised expression. To taunt is to call attention to something annoying or humiliating, usu. maliciously and in front of others: The bully taunted the smaller boy.



(See also INSULT.)

give the gleek To poke fun at; to mock or ridicule. In this expression, gleek carries its archaic meaning of a joke or jest, thus giving the obsolete phrase its figurative sense of harmless teasing.

Sir Thomas, seeing the exceeding vanity of the man, thought he needed modesty, and gave him this gentle gleek. (Christopher Wordsworth, Ecclesiastical Biography, 1599)

laugh in one’s sleeve To laugh surreptitiously; to be secretly amused or contemptuous; to ridicule in secret. This expression alludes to the popular 16th-century Englishman’s garb which included sleeves large enough to hide a person’s face so that he could smile or laugh covertly.

If I coveted now to avenge the injuries that you have done me, I might laugh in my sleeve. (John Daus, A Famous Chronicle of Our Times Called Sleidane’s Commentaries, 1560)

The French equivalent is rire sous cape ‘laugh in one’s cape, ’ referring to a French nobleman’s cape which could serve the same purpose as an Englishman’s sleeve. Another variation which arose in Spain at about the same time is laugh in one’s beard, implying that a beard could be used to hide the expression on one’s face.

laugh like a drain See HUMOROUSNESS.

nine tailors make a man An expression of contempt and derision, usually used in the context of ridiculing someone’s physical stature. Since it was medieval custom to mark the death of a man with nine tolls of the church bell, a woman with six, and a child with three, this obsolete British invective is probably a corruption of nine tellers mark a man, teller being a variation of toller ‘a knell.’ As the expression became more common, however, the original meaning was lost, being replaced by the stereotypic concept of tailors as being so feeble and physically degenerate that it would take nine of them to equal one man of normal size and strength. The Scottish historian Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881) tells of Queen Elizabeth I (1533-1603) who, upon receiving a delegation of eighteen tailors, greeted them with royal wit: “Good morning, gentlemen both.”

quote-unquote So-called; thus designated. This expression is currently becoming more widely used in American speech, usually in a sarcastic, derogatory, or denigrating reference to a person’s or group’s appellation, especially one that is self-assumed. Quote-unquote is a verbal representation of quotation marks (“ ”) which, in writing, are placed around usually complimentary word(s) that are intentionally used cynically or disparagingly. For example, the term might be heard in a context like “The politician dreaded the thought of again having to meet with the quote-unquote pillars of society.”

roast To mock brutally or ridicule; to criticize severely or put down; to dress down, to take down a peg. This relatively recent American colloquialism is a term which, like cook, burn, and heat, is heard in expressions that create an image of discomfort or destruction.

If he were to roast our Skinski it might hurt our business. (Hugh McHugh, You Can Search Me, 1905)

tongue in cheek Sarcastically, insincerely; not seriously, deadpan; mockingly, derisively. The origin of the term is uncertain.

There was no speaking “with his tongue in the cheek.” He spoke straight from the heart. (Sir E. W. Hamilton, Gladstone, 1898)


Past participle: ridiculed
Gerund: ridiculing

I ridicule
you ridicule
he/she/it ridicules
we ridicule
you ridicule
they ridicule
I ridiculed
you ridiculed
he/she/it ridiculed
we ridiculed
you ridiculed
they ridiculed
Present Continuous
I am ridiculing
you are ridiculing
he/she/it is ridiculing
we are ridiculing
you are ridiculing
they are ridiculing
Present Perfect
I have ridiculed
you have ridiculed
he/she/it has ridiculed
we have ridiculed
you have ridiculed
they have ridiculed
Past Continuous
I was ridiculing
you were ridiculing
he/she/it was ridiculing
we were ridiculing
you were ridiculing
they were ridiculing
Past Perfect
I had ridiculed
you had ridiculed
he/she/it had ridiculed
we had ridiculed
you had ridiculed
they had ridiculed
I will ridicule
you will ridicule
he/she/it will ridicule
we will ridicule
you will ridicule
they will ridicule
Future Perfect
I will have ridiculed
you will have ridiculed
he/she/it will have ridiculed
we will have ridiculed
you will have ridiculed
they will have ridiculed
Future Continuous
I will be ridiculing
you will be ridiculing
he/she/it will be ridiculing
we will be ridiculing
you will be ridiculing
they will be ridiculing
Present Perfect Continuous
I have been ridiculing
you have been ridiculing
he/she/it has been ridiculing
we have been ridiculing
you have been ridiculing
they have been ridiculing
Future Perfect Continuous
I will have been ridiculing
you will have been ridiculing
he/she/it will have been ridiculing
we will have been ridiculing
you will have been ridiculing
they will have been ridiculing
Past Perfect Continuous
I had been ridiculing
you had been ridiculing
he/she/it had been ridiculing
we had been ridiculing
you had been ridiculing
they had been ridiculing
I would ridicule
you would ridicule
he/she/it would ridicule
we would ridicule
you would ridicule
they would ridicule
Past Conditional
I would have ridiculed
you would have ridiculed
he/she/it would have ridiculed
we would have ridiculed
you would have ridiculed
they would have ridiculed
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.ridicule - language or behavior intended to mock or humiliateridicule - language or behavior intended to mock or humiliate
discourtesy, disrespect - an expression of lack of respect
2.ridicule - the act of deriding or treating with contempt
offense, offensive activity, discourtesy, offence - a lack of politeness; a failure to show regard for others; wounding the feelings or others
mock - the act of mocking or ridiculing; "they made a mock of him"
Verb1.ridicule - subject to laughter or ridiculeridicule - subject to laughter or ridicule; "The satirists ridiculed the plans for a new opera house"; "The students poked fun at the inexperienced teacher"; "His former students roasted the professor at his 60th birthday"
bemock, mock - treat with contempt; "The new constitution mocks all democratic principles"
tease - mock or make fun of playfully; "the flirting man teased the young woman"
lampoon, satirise, satirize - ridicule with satire; "The writer satirized the politician's proposal"
debunk, expose - expose while ridiculing; especially of pretentious or false claims and ideas; "The physicist debunked the psychic's claims"
stultify - cause to appear foolish; "He stultified himself by contradicting himself and being inconsistent"


1. laugh at, mock, make fun of, make a fool of, humiliate, taunt, sneer at, parody, caricature, jeer at, scoff at, deride, send up (Brit. informal), lampoon, poke fun at, take the piss (out of) (taboo slang), chaff, take the mickey out of (informal), satirize, pooh-pooh, laugh out of court, make a monkey out of, make someone a laughing stock, laugh to scorn I admire her for allowing them to ridicule her.
1. mockery, scorn, derision, laughter, irony, rib, taunting, sneer, satire, jeer, banter, sarcasm, chaff, gibe, raillery He was subjected to public ridicule.
Related words
fear katagelophobia


Words or actions intended to evoke contemptuous laughter:
To make fun or make fun of:
Chiefly British: quiz.
Idiom: poke fun at.
سُخْرِيَه، إسْتِهْزاءيَسْخَر، يَهْزَأ مِن
posměchsmát sevysmívat se
gøre nar afgrine aflatterliggørelse
gera grín aî; hæîast aîháî, aîhlátur


A. Nirrisión f, burla f
to expose sb to public ridiculeexponer a algn a la mofa pública
to hold sth/sb up to ridiculeponer algo/a algn en ridículo
to lay o.s. open to ridiculeexponerse al ridículo
B. VTdejar or poner en ridículo, ridiculizar


ndérision f
to be an object of ridicule → être un objet de risée
She was an object of ridicule with her classmates → Elle était la risée de ses camarades de classe.
to hold sb/sth up to ridicule → tourner qn/qch en ridicule


nSpott m; to hold somebody/something up to ridiculesich über jdn/etw lustig machen; she’s an object of ridiculealles macht sich über sie lustig; to become an object of ridiculeder Lächerlichkeit preisgegeben werden


1. nridicolo
to hold sb/sth up to ridicule → mettere in ridicolo qn/qc
2. vtridicolizzare


(rəˈdikjuləs) adjective
very silly; deserving to be laughed at. That's a ridiculous suggestion; You look ridiculous in that hat!
riˈdiculously adverb
riˈdiculousness noun
ridicule (ˈridikjuːl) verb
to laugh at; to mock. They ridiculed him because he was wearing one brown shoe and one black shoe.
laughter at someone or something; mockery. Despite the ridicule of his neighbours he continued to build a spaceship in his garden.
References in classic literature ?
A demand so sudden and so serious made the young man hesitate a moment, for ridicule is often harder to bear than self-denial.
cried the old gentlewoman, affected with a sense of something like ridicule at the idea.
On the other hand, a penalty which, in our days, would infer a degree of mocking infamy and ridicule, might then be invested with almost as stern a dignity as the punishment of death itself.
But what was still more annoying, Brom took all Opportunities of turning him into ridicule in presence of his mistress, and had a scoundrel dog whom he taught to whine in the most ludicrous manner, and introduced as a rival of Ichabod's, to instruct her in psalmody.
She put the question with such a fine bold humor that, with a laugh, a little silly doubtless, to match her own, I gave way for the time to the apprehension of ridicule.
That if ever it is carried out, it will be in the face of every obstacle that wealth and mastership can oppose--in the face of ridicule and slander, of hatred and persecution, of the bludgeon and the jail?
The negro, it must be remembered, is an exotic of the most gorgeous and superb countries of the world, and he has, deep in his heart, a passion for all that is splendid, rich, and fanciful; a passion which, rudely indulged by an untrained taste, draws on them the ridicule of the colder and more correct white race.
He poured out rivers of ridicule upon them, and forced the big mass meeting to laugh and applaud.
Ben Rogers hove in sight presently -- the very boy, of all boys, whose ridicule he had been dreading.
I prefer to be true to myself, even at the hazard of incurring the ridicule of others, rather than to be false, and incur my own abhor- rence.
She had never rejoiced at the sound before, nor ever before entered the passage, nor walked up the stairs, with any wish of giving pleasure, but in conferring obligation, or of deriving it, except in subsequent ridicule.
Jennings from the probability of wishing to throw ridicule on his age.