Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to navigation Jump to search


Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

From wank +‎ -er.


  • IPA(key): /ˈwæŋkə(ɹ)/
  • Rhymes: -æŋkə(ɹ)
  • (file)
  • (file)


wanker (plural wankers) (UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand)

  1. (slang, derogatory, vulgar) A person who wanks.
  2. (slang, derogatory, vulgar) An idiot, a stupid person.
  3. (slang, derogatory, vulgar) An annoying person.
  4. (slang, derogatory, vulgar) An ineffectual person.
  5. (slang, derogatory, vulgar) Someone who shows off too much, a poser or poseur; someone who is overly self-satisfied.
  6. (slang, derogatory, vulgar) A penis.
    • 2019 April 16, Skye Smith, The Pistoleer - Lyme 1644: Novel Nine of the Series by Skye Smith, Skye Smith, →ISBN:
      He walked closer to the trees and then pulled out his wanker and took a piss. While he was watering a clump of grass he called out calmly to the men in the trees, "We've come in peace to recruit men for our companies of dragoons."
    • For more quotations using this term, see Citations:wanker.
  7. (slang, humorous, vulgar) A very informal address used between friends.
Usage notes[edit]
  • Refers mainly to males. A 2000 study by several British broadcasting organizations found that "wanker" was the fourth most offensive word in the UK (after cunt, motherfucker, and fuck).
Derived terms[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

UK 1890s. From stwanker, from stinker. Used at Felsted School, Essex.


wanker (plural wankers)

  1. (obsolete, Britain, school slang) A salted, and lightly smoked herring or mackerel; a bloater.
    • 1892 October, The Felstedian, page 105:
      My name it is "wanker";
      a leaner or lanker,
      Salter or ranker,
      fish never swam.
    • 1897 June, The Felstedian, page 100:
      He sniffs. "'Eugh, wankers again."


  • Farmer, John Stephen (1900) The Public School Word-Book[1], London: Hirshfeld Brothers, page 217