Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A loud cry of exultation or excitement.
  • n. A shout uttered by a hunter or warrior.
  • n. A hooting cry, as of a bird.
  • n. The paroxysmal gasp characteristic of whooping cough.
  • intransitive v. To utter a loud shout or cry. See Synonyms at shout.
  • intransitive v. To utter a hooting cry.
  • intransitive v. To make the paroxysmal gasp characteristic of whooping cough.
  • transitive v. To utter with a whoop.
  • transitive v. To chase, call, urge on, or drive with a whoop: whooping the cattle down the road.
  • idiom whoop it up Slang To have a jolly, noisy celebration.
  • idiom whoop it up Slang To express or arouse enthusiasm; cheer: conventioneers whooping it up for their candidate.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An exclamation, a cry, usually of joy.
  • n. A gasp, characteristic of whooping cough.
  • n. A bump on a racetrack.
  • v. To make a whoop.
  • v. To beat, to strike.
  • v. To defeat thoroughly.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The hoopoe.
  • intransitive v. To utter a whoop, or loud cry, as eagerness, enthusiasm, or enjoyment; to cry out; to shout; to halloo; to utter a war whoop; to hoot, as an owl.
  • intransitive v. To cough or breathe with a sonorous inspiration, as in whooping cough.
  • transitive v. To insult with shouts; to chase with derision.
  • n. A shout of pursuit or of war; a very of eagerness, enthusiasm, enjoyment, vengeance, terror, or the like; an halloo; a hoot, or cry, as of an owl.
  • n. A loud, shrill, prolonged sound or sonorous inspiration, as in whooping cough.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To shout with a loud voice; cry out loudly, as in excitement, or in calling to some one; halloo; shout; also, to hoot, as an owl.
  • In medicine, to make a sonorous inspiration, as that following the paroxysm of coughing in whooping-cough.
  • To hoot at; insult or deride with shouts or hooting; drive or follow with shouts or outcry.
  • To call or signal to by a shout or whoop.
  • n. A whooping or hooting cry, like that of the crane; a loud call or shout; a cry designed to attract the attention of a person at a distance, or to express excitement, encouragement, enthusiasm, vengeance, or terror.
  • n. In medicine, the peculiar sonorous inspiration following the attack of coughing in whoopingcough.
  • Ho! hallo!
  • n. Same as hoop for hoopoe.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. cough spasmodically
  • n. a loud hooting cry of exultation or excitement
  • v. shout, as if with joy or enthusiasm

Etymologies

From Middle English whopen, to whoop, variant of hopen, from Old French hopper, of imitative origin.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English whopen, whowpen, howpen, houpen ("to whoop, cry out"), partially from Old French houper, hopper, houpper ("to shout"), of uncertain origin (compare Old Norse ópa ("to cry, scream, shout"), Gothic  (wōpjan, "to crow as a cock"), Gothic  (hwōpjan, "to boast"), Old English hwōpan ("to threaten")); and partially from Middle English wop ("weeping, lamentation"), from Old English wōp ("cry, outcry, shrieking, weeping, lamentation"), see woop. (Wiktionary)
Corruption of whip. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Haven't heard the term whoop-ass for about 7 years, and even then it was a joke...

    Two More Transformers 2 TV Spots and English Language Wheelie Clip | /Film

  • The "whoop" comes from the sharp intake of breath following a series of exhausting, oxygen-depleting coughs.

    Whooping cough makes a comeback

  • The high-pitched whoop is a symptom heard mainly in younger children; it's the sound of a desperate attempt to breathe.

    Bucking the Herd

  • It puts out a down-swept signal, a sort of a "whoop" - type sound and it repeats it constantly on a couple of different frequencies, and they are both emergency guard frequencies that both the military and civilian pilots, airliners all listen to.

    CNN Transcript - Breaking News: Nine Injured, One Dead Found Off Key West Coast - September 19, 2000

  • Duvall has an uncanny ear for the Pentecostal preaching cadence - including the "whoop" - which is unusual since he was raised a Christian Scientist, where services are about as flamboyant as a toaster oven.

    NPR Topics: News

  • Black preachers who 'whoop' -- minstrels or ministers?

    CNN.com

  • That is something that she's been trying to hit home on the campaign trail, and yesterday also taking some jabs at her opponent, saying in her words we have to go beyond what she's calling whoop-de - doo speeches, in order to face the challenges ahead.

    CNN Transcript Apr 20, 2008

  • "It was a loud cough that went down to her toes, and the whoop was a sharp intake of breath," she recalled.

    Bucking the Herd

  • As the air rushes past the glottis, which is still partially closed, a sound recalling the whoop of pertussis is heard.

    The Nervous Child

  • The only protective equipment that I thought was worth a whoop was a very peculiar device with which a contingent of five hundred Altoonas was supplied.

    The Airlords of Han

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