Share this entry

hee-haw Syllabification: hee-haw
Pronunciation: /ˈhē ˌhô/

Definition of hee-haw in English:


1The loud, harsh cry of a donkey or mule.
Example sentences
  • She began laughing in an obnoxious way, sounding like a mix between a donkey hee-haw and a pig snort.
  • One particular group of males perched behind us had particularly irritating mating calls, responding to the incessant female cries with various forms of donkey-like hee-haws.
  • She imitates his nasal hee-haw very loudly and we look on, aghast.
1.1 [as modifier] US informal Relating to or denoting unsophisticated rural humor and attitudes: hee-haw manners
More example sentences
  • If you aren't prepared for a big dose of early-60's style hee-haw music, don't buy this album.
  • This seemed to strike a funny cord in Jake, because he began laughing in an almost hee-haw kind of cackling.
  • This hee-haw fellow resonated with youngsters.


[no object] Back to top  
Make the loud, harsh cry of a donkey or mule.
Example sentences
  • My memories of him will be as the little chatterbox, cracking the one liners, hee-hawing uncontrollably.
  • The gang laughed and hee-hawed, stomped and danced and chanted a good-night prayer.


Early 19th century: imitative.

Definition of hee-haw in:

Share this entry


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day whippersnapper
Pronunciation: ˈwɪpəsnapə
a young, inexperienced person considered presumptuous or overconfident...