noun, plural bal·ly·hoos.
- a clamorous and vigorous attempt to win customers or advance any cause; blatant advertising or publicity.
- clamor or outcry.
- a halfbeak, Hemiramphus brasiliensis, inhabiting both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.
verb (used with or without object), bal·ly·hooed, bal·ly·hoo·ing.
- to advertise or push by ballyhoo.
- a noisy, confused, or nonsensical situation or uproar
- sensational or blatant advertising or publicity
verb -hoos, -hooing or -hooed
- (tr) mainly US to advertise or publicize by sensational or blatant methods
“publicity, hype,” 1908, from circus slang, “a short sample of a sideshow” (1901), of unknown origin. There is a village of Ballyhooly in County Cork, Ireland. In nautical lingo, ballahou or ballahoo (1867, perhaps 1836) meant “an ungainly vessel,” from Spanish balahu “schooner.”