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Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

1915, apparently from a language of the Philippines. Registered as a trademark in Vancouver, Canada, in 1932, the year the first craze for them began (subsequent fads 1950s, 1970s, 1998). The toy itself is much older and was earlier known as bandalore (1802), a word of obscure origin, "but it was from American contact in the Philippines that the first commercial development was established" [Century Dictionary]. Figurative sense of any "up-and-down movement" is first recorded 1932. Meaning "stupid person" is recorded from 1970. The verb in the figurative sense is attested from 1967.


n. 1 A toy consisting of a spheroidal or cylindrical spindle having a circular groove in which string is wind; it is used by holding the string in the fingers and reeling the spindle up and down by movements of the wrist. 2 (context finance English) A volatile market that moves up and down. 3 (context informal English) Someone who vacillates. 4 (context informal English) A foolish, annoying or incompetent person. vb. (context intransitive English) To vacillate; to move up and down.


n. a toy consisting of a spool that is reeled up and down on a string by motions of the hand


A yo-yo (also spelled yoyo) is a toy which in its simplest form is an object consisting of an axle connected to two disks, and a length of string looped around the axle, similar to a slender spool. It is played by holding the free end of the string known as the handle (usually by inserting one finger into a slip knot) allowing gravity or the force of a throw to spin the yo-yo and unwind the string (similar to how a pullstring works), then allowing the yo-yo to wind itself back to one's hand, exploiting its spin (and the associated rotational energy). This is often called "yo-yoing". First made popular in the 1920s, yo-yoing remains a popular pastime of many generations and cultures. It was first invented in ancient Greece.

In the simplest play, the string is intended to be wound on the spool by hand; The yo-yo is thrown downwards, hits the end of the string, then winds up the string toward the hand, and finally the yo-yo is grabbed, ready to be thrown again. One of the most basic tricks is called the sleeper, where the yo-yo spins at the end of the string for a noticeable amount of time before returning to the hand.

Many yo-yo tricks are done while the yo-yo is said to be sleeping. One of the most famous tricks on the yo-yo is "walk the dog". This is done by throwing a strong sleeper and allowing the yo-yo to roll across the floor, before tugging it back to the hand. English historical names for the yo-yo include bandalore (from French) and quiz. French historical terms include bandalore, incroyable, de Coblenz, emigrette, and joujou de Normandie (joujou meaning little toy).

Yo-Yo (rapper)

Yo-Yo (born Yolanda Whitaker; August 4, 1971) is an American hip hop recording artist, actress and entrepreneur. Much of her music has advocated female empowerment, denouncing the frequent sexism found in hip-hop music. She is the protégé of gangsta rapper Ice Cube. Yo-Yo dubbed her crew the IBWC, which stood for the Intelligent Black Woman's Coalition.

Yo-yo (disambiguation)

A yo-yo is a toy.

Yo-yo may also refer to:

Yo-Yo (album)

Yo-Yo was released by Australian hard rock group The Choirboys in 1996 and is the follow-up to their previous studio album, Dancing on the Grave of Rock n' Roll. The album was recorded in Cologne, Germany with producer Peter Blyton. "Solo" was released as a single in December and soon after, drummer Barton Price left the group.

A limited edition twin-CD package of Yo-Yo and Dancing on the Grave of Rock n' Roll was also released. Yo-Yo didn't get the publicity of their early albums and failed to make an impact in the charts when it was released.

Yo-Yo (Billy Joe Royal song)

"Yo-Yo" is a song written by Joe South and first released as a single by Billy Joe Royal in 1966, peaking at No. 117 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The Osmonds covered the song and released it as a single on September 4, 1971. It reached No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 on October 16, 1971. The song was included on the Osmonds' 1972 album, Phase III. It was certified Gold by the RIAA on November 17, 1971. Joe South also recorded his own version of the song for his self-titled 1971 album.

Yo-Yo (Joey Moe song)

"Yo-Yo" is a song recorded by the Danish singer Joey Moe. This song was the break-through song for Joey, and after just a few weeks it was the most downloaded song on iTunes. It's the most played song in Danish clubs. And it's the longest reigning number 1 on the Danish Dance chart.

Category:Danish songs Category:2009 singles Category:2009 songs

Yo-Yo (Nicola Roberts song)

"Yo-Yo" is a song by British recording artist Nicola Roberts, released as the third and final single from Roberts' debut solo album Cinderella's Eyes on 6 January 2012. Originally, "Yo-Yo" was set to be Roberts' debut single, but " Beat of My Drum" was selected in its place. "Beat of My Drum" and " Lucky Day", Roberts' previous singles, garnered positive comments from critics, but failed to impact commercially. "Yo-Yo" was written by Roberts, Maya Von Doll and Dimitri Tikovoi while it was produced by latter, and was the first song to be composed by the group. Roberts also claimed the track had defined her musical style.

"Yo-Yo" is a 1950s-themed electropop and synthpop song in which Roberts sings about an undecided lover. The song received positive reviews from critics, who compared Roberts' vocals to those of singer Kate Bush. Commercially, it was a failure, charting at number 111 on the UK Singles Chart. A music video was released on 30 November 2011; the video sees Roberts repeatedly changing outfit for a party in which she finds her love interest cheating on her, ending with an aggressive confrontation. It garnered positive critical responses although the low-budget drew criticism. Roberts performed "Yo-Yo" at London's G-A-Y nightclub and on the Alan Titchmarsh Show, among other occasions.

Usage examples of "yo-yo".

They dived deeper, through a band of pressure and temperature where water rain fell, pattering hard against the skins of their whirling double discs, then on down, down into even wide-light darkness, down to the warm hydrogen slush where the discs floated like giant double-cone yo-yos, bobbing, steaming, flickering signals to each other.

Everything he could think of that might help or amuse the Aucas, should they pay the men a visit, Jim put into the bag: harmonica, snakebite kit, flashlight, View-Master with picture reels, yo-yo, and, above all, the precious notebook of Auca language material, with the carefully arranged morphology file.

The Mark 12 Yo-Yo is dropped by a P-5 Pegasus patrol plane, is about ten feet in diameter, and pops out a small buoy that stays on the surface while the main body of it sinks to eight hundred to one thousand feet, whatever best listening depth is.

Polo Lounge of the Beverly Hills Hotel, he gets a phone call from some yo-yo named Liddy, whom he barely knows, saying that four Cubans he's never even met have just been caught in the act of burglarizing the office of the Democratic National Committee located in an office building about 200 yards across the plaza below his own balcony in the Watergate apartments.

And suddenly, at the very pinnacle of his power, he casually puts his initials on a memo proposing one of at least a dozen or so routine election-year bits of "undercover work" -- and several months later while having breakfast in the Polo Lounge of the Beverly Hills Hotel, he gets a phone call from some yo-yo named Liddy, whom he barely knows, saying that four Cubans he's never even met have just been caught in the act of burglarizing the office of the Democratic National Committee located in an office building about 200 yards across the plaza below his own balcony in the Watergate apartments.

Yo-yos, hula hoops and pogo sticks, with their associated behavioral fixed actions, sweep through schools, and more sporadically leap from school to school, in patterns that differ from a measles epidemic in no serious particular.

For the past fifty years, we have been at the mercy of OPEC, who has played with market prices like a yo-yo.

Harry, who had expected something much more exciting, saw a mess of small, everyday objects: a yo-yo, a silver thimble, and a tarnished mouth organ among them.

Somewhere there must be a common denominator to explain why it should be these five items and not five other things, say roller curtains and pogo sticks and yo-yos and airplanes and toothpaste.

Maybe you yo-yos did Its work, but It didn't exactly play favorites, did It?

But I was really surprised those yo-yos in the Bu­reau let you go afterwards.

Maybe I try too hard sometimes, bringing them yo-yos and stuff, presents every time I come.