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alley-oop, int., adv., n., and adj.

Forms:  19– alley-oop, 19– allez-oop, 19– allez-up, 19– ally-oop. (Show Less)
Frequency (in current use): 
Origin: A borrowing from French. Etymon: French allez-hop.
Etymology: < French allez-hop, interjection (19th cent. or earlier) < allez  , imperative of aller   to go (see allons int.) + hop  , expressive word, of imitative origin (1652 as houp  ; compare Middle French houper  , verb (end of the 14th cent.); compare houp-la int.).
With form allez-up   compare up adv.1
 A. int.

  ‘Get up!’ ‘Go on!’ Used to encourage or draw attention to the performance of an acrobatic or other physical feat, esp. one involving a leap or lift upwards.

1917   B. S. Walcott Let. 9 Sept. in Princeton Alumni Weekly 6 Feb. (1918) 389/1,   I fortunately found a spark plug on the burn and got that repaired and alley oop!
1923   J. Dos Passos Streets of Night (1990) 168   Alley oop! Continuez!
1926   L. Hart Allez-up in Compl. Lyrics (1986) 76/1   We love to holler ‘Allez-up’! No matter what we do. That's why we always rally up When we're a little blue.
1927   W. Smith Are you Decent? 73   The Four Tumbling Tarks, who..thumped and bumped through their limbering up, and shouted ‘alley- oop!’
1950   Times 22 Dec. 2/5   ‘Allez oop,’ cried the acrobat's wife, with her heart in her mouth.
2003   A. Stockenberg Month at Shore xvii. 185   ‘Alley-oop,’ he said, and he lifted her out of her seat as easily as if she were a bag of laundry.

1917—2003(Hide quotations)

 B. adv.
1923   Middletown (N.Y.) Daily Herald 8 Nov. 4/3   Down with the starched collars! Allez up with the soft!

1923—1923(Hide quotations)

 C. n.

 1. A cry of ‘Alley-oop’ (see sense A.).

1927   W. Smith Are you Decent? 94   Rollie says..we should cut out our ‘alley-oop’. He says: ‘It's vulgar, that alley-oop. Every small-time acrobat says “alley-oop”.’
1946   C. F. Wells Virtue Triumphant in T. Johnson Easy to Do Novelty Entertainments 34   Mother and Baby pick up the box with an ‘alley-oop’ and walk away with it.
1997   L. Willson tr. G. Köpf Innerfar 106   With an alley-oop Karlina..climbs nimbly with one foot in my clasped hands..and swings herself onto the nearest limb.
2010   D. Morrison Black Nile ii,   With an alley-oop I was sitting on the man's shoulders..as he waded into the chest-high surf.

1927—2010(Hide quotations)


 2. N. Amer. Sport. An alley-oop catch, pass, or manoeuvre (see sense D.).

1965   H. Rosenthal Big Play 71   Owens helped beat the Chicago Bears with a catch he made in the end zone;..a week later he gathered in an Alley Oop from Tittle for a victory over Green Bay.
1978   Daily Intelligencer (Doylestown, Pa.) 25 Sept. 17 c,   It was originally supposed to be an alley-oop to Harold.
1995   Fusion Sept. 92/2   Tomahawk jams, alley oops and all them other ‘phat’ moves.
2003   D. Millner & N. Chiles In Love & War 134   Derrick came down and fed Tariq with an alley-oop over the sleeping St. Anthony's defense.
2006   Snowboard Jrnl. No. 10. 29/1 (caption)    It was a mystery how he managed to ride at all with that set-up, let alone tweak alley-oops on this natural quarter pipe!

1965—2006(Hide quotations)

 D. adj. (attrib.).

 a. N. Amer. Sport. Designating a high, arcing pass, hit, or catch.

1957   Y. A. Tittle in Reno (Nevada) Evening Gaz. 4 Nov. 14/2,   I decided to go for the Alley-Oop pass. I knew I had to lay it in the end zone, high, and I just rared back and threw as hard as I could.
1957   Jet 21 Nov. 37 (caption)    Leaping high to snare football, brilliant San Francisco 49er rookie RC (Overdrive) Owens demonstrates his spectacular ‘alley-oop’ catch.
1974   Sporting News 27 July 52/3   Shortstop Danny Monzon slapped an alley-oop single over third baseman Roy Staiger's head into short left field.
2004   Press Enterprise (Riverside, Calif.) (Nexis) 25 Aug. c11   The catch Jarrett made on an alley-oop toss into the end zone over the entire first-team backfield had to help him feel better.

1957—2004(Hide quotations)


 b. spec. in Basketball. Relating to or involving a high pass near the basket that is received above the rim and dunked or tipped in to score; (also) designating a basket scored from such a pass.

1959   Appeal Democrat (Marysville, Calif.) 21 Jan. 6/1 (headline)    Oroville using ‘Alley Oop’ play. The Oroville Tigers have adapted the San Francisco '49er football team's famed..play to their own use on the basketball court.
1974   Frederick (Maryland) Post 26 Mar. b1/1   Whether soaring to score on his ‘alley-oop’ shots or leaping high to intimidate Marquette's shooters, Thompson was the nemesis of the Warriors.
1991   Sports Illustr. 8 Apr. 23/1   An astonishing one-handed, alley-oop dunk two minutes into the game.
2004   Washington Post (Home ed.) 31 Mar. d1/5   Billups lobbing alley-oop passes to Tayshaun Prince that were converted into dunks.

1959—2004(Hide quotations)


 2. In skateboarding, snowboarding, etc.: designating any of various spinning manoeuvres, typically involving a 180-degree turn.

1989   Guardian 29 Nov. (Society section) 46/3   Do you know what an ollie to frontside 50/50 is? A stale-grab Madonna? A smith-grind to revert? An alley-oop lipslide?.. (They are all gravity- or death-defying tricks.)
1996   Inline Jan. 12/2,   I can only do..some grinds like an alley-oop frontside..soul grind.
1998   Unity Sept. 36/2   Issam was..pulling real high alley-oop airs and 720 McTwists with great style.
2007   On Board Jan. 122   Here we go again! The Alley-Oop 540 is without a doubt the coolest and most beautiful trick you can do in the pipe.

1989—2007(Hide quotations)


This is a new entry (OED Third Edition, June 2005).

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