AskDefine | Define mooning

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. The act of showing one's buttocks.


  1. present participle of moon

Extensive Definition

Mooning is the act of displaying one's bare buttocks by removing clothing, e.g. by lowering the back side of one's trousers and underpants, usually bending over, whether also exposing the genitals or not. Mooning is used in some cultures to express protest, scorn, disrespect or provocation but can simply be done for shock value or fun. In 2006, a Maryland USA court of appeal determined that mooning is a form of expression protected by the United States constitutional right of freedom of speech. The court ruled that indecent exposure only relates to exposure of the genitals, adding that even though mooning was a "disgusting" and "demeaning" act to engage in, and had in addition taken place in the presence of a minor, "If exposure of half of the buttocks constituted indecent exposure, any woman wearing a thong at the beach at Ocean City would be guilty."
Defense attorneys had cited a 1983 case of a woman who was arrested after protesting in front of the U.S. Supreme Court wearing nothing but a cardboard sign that covered the front of her body. In that case, the Washington D.C. Court of Appeals had ruled that indecent exposure is limited to a person's genitals. No review of the case by a higher body, such as a Supreme Court took place, since the States Attorney dropped the prosecution after the ruling.

Notable incidents of mooning

  • During the Battle of Crécy in 1346 when king Edward III of England took Caen, on the way to Crécy, several hundred Norman soldiers exposed their backsides to the English archers and many of them paid a high price for doing so.
  • In the siege of Constantinople during the Fourth Crusade in 1204, the Greeks exposed their bare buttocks to the Crusaders after they repulsed them from the walls.
  • The Etchemin tribe of Maine were noted for this custom by a number of early explorers of the Atlantic coastline.
  • In the 1970s, rock band AC/DC generated additional interest in their music and especially their concerts by having lead guitarist Angus Young moon at audiences. They were banned from performing in some parts of the UK for this reason.
  • In June 2000, a mass mooning event was organised outside of Buckingham Palace in the United Kingdom by the Movement Against the Monarchy (M'AM). The idea was for anti-monarchists to show their dislike of the British monarchy by performing a mass mooning at their home. However, a large police presence prevented a large scale mooning, but even so, a few individuals mooned (although there were many more who turned up to the event but were put off mooning by the large police presence). Some of them were arrested, but others managed to pose for various newspapers etc. This event is known as the Moon Against the Monarchy event.
  • The Annual Mooning of Amtrak is a long-running annual tradition in Laguna Niguel, (Orange County) California, U.S.A, where many people spend all day mooning at Amtrak trains; some even ride the trains on that day just so they can witness the event. This mooning has spawned a chain of "train moonings" throughout the entire country.
  • At the 2005 UK Music Hall of Fame awards ceremony, musician Ozzy Osbourne decided to moon the crowd after a set he played with his group Black Sabbath.
  • Patrick Devine, 19, from County Donegal, Ireland was arrested on 27 July 2007 for allegedly dropping his trousers as a dare in Saint Louis in Senegal. Devine, a student of Queens University Belfast, could spend up to 6 months in jail for his alleged actions.
  • The musical and movie Grease has a humorous incident of mooning, when three pranksters at a televised dance competition do it live.
  • English Premiership footballer Joey Barton was fined £2,000 for mooning Everton fans.
  • A tradition of thru-hikers Mooning the Cog has developed on Mount Washington.
  • On January 9, 2005, Randy Moss of the Minnesota Vikings feigned mooning the Green Bay Packers fans following a touchdown he scored. He was fined $10,000 by the NFL for the incident.


mooning in Danish: Måne (bagdel)
mooning in German: Mooning
mooning in Hebrew: מונינג
mooning in Dutch: Moonen
mooning in Portuguese: Bundalelê
mooning in Yiddish: מונינג

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

Walter Mitty, absence of mind, absent, absentminded, absentmindedness, absorbed, absorption, abstracted, abstractedness, abstraction, bemused, bemusement, brown study, castle-building, daydream, daydreamer, daydreaming, daydreamy, depth of thought, dream, dreaming, dreamy, drowsing, ecstatic, elsewhere, engrossed, engrossment, fantasy, fantasying, faraway, fit of abstraction, half-awake, in a reverie, in the clouds, lost, lost in thought, meditative, moonraking, muse, museful, musefulness, musing, muted ecstasy, napping, nodding, oblivious, pensive, pipe dream, pipe-dreaming, preoccupation, preoccupied, rapt, reverie, somewhere else, stargazing, study, taken up, trance, transported, unconscious, woolgathering, wrapped in thought
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