Definition of hokey-cokey in English:



  • A group dance performed in a circle with a synchronized shaking of the limbs in turn, accompanied by a simple song.

    • ‘Dwell on the red circle formed by the Arsenal players, which began with a show of unity and descended into an impromptu hokey-cokey.’
    • ‘Seeing our Japanese hosts do the hokey-cokey was a sight to behold.’
    • ‘After forcing us to sing a Neil Diamond medley, he tops the show by prodding the audience into doing the hokey-cokey while spraying us with champagne.’
    • ‘Their hosts also organised several school visits, where hardened cavers ended up doing the hokey-cokey with the children!’
    • ‘After half an hour of it, you were almost glad to be back in the company of sozzled aunties, joining in a spirited rendition of the hokey-cokey.’
    • ‘The Eccleshill museum will wind back to the 1940s on Monday as it offers a chance to do the hokey-cokey to wartime music.’
    • ‘And his game of political hokey-cokey between Holyrood and Westminster hasn't helped either.’


1940s perhaps from hocus-pocus.