Definition of poppet in English:



  • 1British informal An endearingly sweet or pretty child (often used as an affectionate form of address)

    ‘‘Here you are, poppet,’ the nurse said’
    • ‘The problem is not that your husband won't take you to parties, my poppet, the problem is that you blotted your social copy book.’
    • ‘But I'll be back, my little poppets, full of pictures and stories just as soon as possible.’
    • ‘This is Thailand after all, isn't it, my poppet.’
    • ‘Don't worry, poppet, your mother said you could come with me and go to the toilet in the woods.’
    • ‘You have certainly got yourself into a Persian pickle, my poppet!’
    • ‘Hillary is glad you have been able to unburden your soul, but you are making a few false assumptions yourself, my poppet.’
    • ‘This is the way things are done round here, my poppet, so stop worrying immediately.’
    • ‘Taking an interest into my well-being, poppet?’
    • ‘"Thank you for bringing him inside, poppet," Julien agreed, smiling at his youngest daughter.’
    • ‘He flashed James an apologetic smile before continuing in the face of his wife's incredulous stares, ‘Any more objections, poppet?’’
    • ‘I was at a convenient store, and this woman was like, ‘Cheers, poppet!’’
    • ‘She was a little poppet though and didn't even murmur.’
    • ‘You should've damn well asked me in the first place, shouldn't you have, poppet?’
    • ‘Parents must be rushing to the talent agencies with visions of fame and money for their poppets.’
    • ‘I watched him as he lifted the child by its leg and dangled the baby as if it were a poppet.’
    • ‘We were never going to be running Moby's fan club (not until he decides to knock out something with a bit of backbone anyway), but the cute bald poppet has got a point about Las Vegas.’
    • ‘Even your average manufactured pop poppet has to work harder than her boy-band counterpart, who can rely on looks alone to generate pubescent squeals.’
    • ‘Perhaps it wasn't clean enough for the poor, precious poppet.’
    • ‘There is cynicism at work every time politicians draft in some forgotten singer or soap poppet to do their dirty work.’
    • ‘My poor, strange, stoic little poppet, trapped inside her own body, her own shell of an existence.’
    young woman, young lady, girl, schoolgirl, slip of a girl
  • 2historical A small figure of a human being used in sorcery and witchcraft.

    • ‘But my husband gets these crazy ideas that my poppets are voodoo dolls and that I stick pins in them.’
    • ‘When I do a spell, I whip out a candle, make a poppet, and I chant.’
    • ‘You can make a poppet, host a vigil, meditate, write a poem, anything that will contribute to the swell of positive energy.’
    • ‘I would sew into the poppet his picture and/or handwriting sample, a small piece of moonstone and malachite, and some healing herbs which induce sleep, like lavender and lemon balm.’
    • ‘Or, if the poppet represents the Other in a love spell, you treat it nice, talk sweetly to it.’
    • ‘If the people reading the misinformation are not stupid, they'll figure out that there's more to this than poppets and candle-spells.’
  • 3

    (also poppet valve)
    A mushroom-shaped valve with a flat end piece that is lifted in and out of an opening by an axial rod.

    • ‘The fuel pressure overcomes the spring tension in the poppet valve, forcing it from its ball and seat, injecting fuel into the prospective cylinder.’
    • ‘The second combustion chamber also has a cam 18 driven exhaust poppet valve 14 which can be selectively disabled to a closed position to deactivate the second combustion chamber.’
    • ‘They were also equipped with Franklin Type B rotary-cam poppet valve gear, which had outside drive shafts.’
    • ‘The engine in question isn't your typical weed whip's two-stroke, but a high-value design that mimics a typical automotive four-stroke engine design with overhead cams, poppet valves, and cylinder scavenging via a supercharger.’
    • ‘According to company sources, the flow rate of the 315/415-series valve is 35% higher than those of similarly sized poppet valves.’


Late Middle English based on Latin pup(p)a ‘girl, doll’. Compare with puppet.