a secret ballot or vote against a person or thing
Origin of blackballfrom a small black ball formerly used as a means of voting against a person or thing
- to vote against; esp., to vote against letting (a person) join one's organization
- to bar or ostracize from social life, a particular profession, etc.
- A negative vote, especially one that blocks the admission of an applicant to an organization.
- A small black ball used as a negative ballot.
transitive verbblack·balled, black·ball·ing, black·balls
- To vote against, especially to veto the admission of.
- To shut out from social or commercial participation; ostracize or boycott.
- A rejection, a vote against admitting someone.
- A black ball used to indicate such a negative vote.
- Regardless how many other people may have voted to approve a candidate for membership, a single blackball will reject the candidate.
- the act of so rejecting someone.
- A kind of large black sweet; a niggerball.
- A substance for blacking shoes, boots, etc. or for taking impressions of engraved work.
(third-person singular simple present blackballs, present participle blackballing, simple past and past participle blackballed)
- To vote against, especially in an exclusive organization.
- If you're not from a moneyed, well-connected family, you can count on getting blackballed from the fraternity.
- To ostracize.