Wallop and pack a wallop

Photo of author


Wallop and its related idiom pack a wallop are terms that many find confusing. An idiom is a word, group of words or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is not easily deduced from its literal definition. We will examine the meaning of the terms wallop and pack a wallop, where they came from and some examples of their use in sentences.

Wallop means to deliver a heavy punch, to deal a blow, to soundly defeat someone. Wallop may also describe something that is effective in a very powerful manner or leaves a lasting impression. Wallop is used as  noun or as a transitive verb, which is a verb that takes an object. Related words are wallops, walloped, walloping. The word wallop is derived from the Old French word waloper which means running well.

To pack a wallop means to be strong or to leave a deep impact on something or someone. Pack a wallop may refer to something physical, such as a blow from one person to another. It may describe something that leaves a deep impression, such as a very spicy dish. Pack a wallop may also refer to something that leaves a profound psychological impression on someone, such as an emotional story. Related expressions are packs a wallop, packed a wallop, packing a wallop.


And all signs point to this storm packing a wallop, with snowfall amounts of more than a foot and maximum wind gusts through the day on Friday of up to 60 mph. (The Rapid City Journal)

The boss threatens to wallop Jane with it after the writer submits a piece that puts a sunny spin on the troubles of a feminine-hygiene startup. (The New Yorker)

Tate conveys such authority and packs such a metaphoric wallop into his warped depictions of and philosophical meditations on urban life that focusing on his technical shortcomings misses the point. (The Chicago Reader)