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Alternative forms[edit]


Unknown, perhaps originally Dublin slang.[1] According to Green’s Dictionary of Slang, may be an euphemism for ballocks.[2]


  • (UK, US) IPA(key): /ˈbæn.d͡ʒæks/, /bænˈd͡ʒæks/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -æks


banjax (third-person singular simple present banjaxes, present participle banjaxing, simple past and past participle banjaxed)

  1. (Britain, originally Ireland, slang) To ruin or destroy.
    • 1922, Darrell Figgis, The House of Success, The Gael Co-operative Publishing Society, Ltd., page 146:
      I hoofed his backside till he went down all of a heap. That banjaxed his little game. You should have heard his hullabulloo.
    • 1928, Eimar O'Duffy, The Spacious Adventures of the Man in the Street, Macmillan, page 370:
      Indeed, it seemed that the army was hopelessly banjaxed.
    • 1970, Edna O'Brien, A Pagan Place, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, published 2001, page 91:
      Emma had suggested that you hide, said your presence might banjax her position.
    • 2006, Craig Ferguson, Between the Bridge and the River, Chronicle Books, page 252:
      Fraser was looking at the flat, wet countryside and thinking about the French policeman who had banjaxed him with the truncheon.
    • For quotations using this term, see Citations:banjax.



banjax (plural banjaxes)

  1. (chiefly Ireland, informal) A mess or undesirable situation made as a result of incompetence.
    • 1922, Seán O'Casey, Juno and the Paycock:
      I'm tellin' you the scholar, Bentham, made a banjax o' th' Will.


  1. ^ Oxford English Dictionary, 2013.
  2. ^ Jonathon Green (2022), “banjax”, in Green's Dictionary of Slang