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From Old French jaque (coat of mail).


  • IPA(key): /ˈd͡ʒækbuːt/
  • (file)
  • Hyphenation: jack‧boot


jackboot (plural jackboots)

  1. A glossy leather calf-covering military boot, commonly associated with German soldiers of the WWII era.
    • 1829, [Edward Bulwer-Lytton], chapter V, in Devereux. A Tale. [] , volume II, London: Henry Colburn, [], OCLC 1079341649:
      On a huge tomb-like table in the middle of the room, lay two pencilled profiles of Mr. Fielding, a pawnbroker’s ticket, a pair of ruffles, a very little muff, an immense broadsword, a Wycherley comb, a jackboot, and an old plumed hat; []
    • 1858 February 19 (date written), Nathaniel Hawthorne, “February 19th [1858]”, in Passages from the French and Italian Note-books of Nathaniel Hawthorne, volume I, London: Strahan & Co., [], published 1871, OCLC 2002339, page 98:
      There was a wonderful variety of costume to be seen and studied among the persons around me, [] other soldiers in helmets and jackboots; French officers of various uniform; monks and priests; attendants, in old-fashioned and gorgeous livery; [] so that, in any other country, the scene might have been taken for a fancy ball.
    • 1914, Frank L. Packard, The Miracle Man Chapter 3
      The coat itself, a long one of some fuzzy material, with huge side pockets into which the man's hands were plunged, reached to the cavernous tops of jackboots where the nether ends of his trousers were stowed away.
  2. (informal, by extension) The spirit that motivates a totalitarian or overly militaristic regime or policy.
    That country has been under the jackboot of the military for years.

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jackboot (third-person singular simple present jackboots, present participle jackbooting, simple past and past participle jackbooted)

  1. (transitive) To stamp on with a jackboot.
    • 2000, Geoff Nicholson, Bedlam Burning:
      The two porters leapt into action, steamed up to the front of the room and started jackbooting the burning paper.
  2. (intransitive) To march in jackboots.
    • 1990, Robert Westall, The Machine Gunners (page 152)
      All his childhood they had stormed through the cinema newsreels, jackbooting triumphantly through Vienna, Prague, Warsaw, Paris. Now they would jackboot through Garmouth. Followed by the Gestapo.