While the word haymaker might simply refer to someone who is baling hay or a machine that bales hay, the term has taken on another, idiomatic meaning that is perhaps more common today. We will look at the secondary meaning of the term haymaker, where it came from and some examples of its use in sentences.

A haymaker is a powerful punch or a knockout punch. The plural of haymaker is haymakers. Usually, a haymaker is a punch that involves a swinging arc, delivering a large amount of power at impact. This visual echos the swinging of the scythe in harvesting hay in the field. The term comes from the sport of boxing, the earliest known use of the word haymaker occured in American newspapers at the very turn of the twentieth century. Generally, a haymaker is a boxing punch that is easy to see coming and is only employed when the boxer is confident he will knock his opponent out with the blow.


Hansen: Arizona Wildcats’ ‘counterpunch’ delivers haymaker to reeling Buffs  (The Arizona Daily Star)

RAWLINS — Coming back for round two in the legislative boxing ring, a proposed hike to the state’s wind tax took a haymaker to the chin and went down in the second round, failing to pass the House Revenue Committee in a 7-2 vote. (The Rawlins Times)

Spencer — who was infamously caught on tape back in November sparking Nazi salutes after shouting “Hail Trump” during a white nationalist gathering in D.C. — had been answering questions on a sidewalk and posing for pictures when his masked assailant landed the haymaker. (The New York Post)

But Penn always seemed to be the team up against the ropes, never able to throw that haymaker, and it showed on the scoreboard in a 78-71 loss. (The Daily Pennsylvanian)

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