Peanut gallery

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Howdy Doody peanut gallery circa 1940 1950s

A peanut gallery was, in the days of vaudeville, a nickname for the cheapest (and ostensibly rowdiest) seats in the theater, the occupants of which were often known to heckle.[1]

The least expensive snack served at the theatre would often be peanuts, which the patrons would sometimes throw at the performers on stage to show their disapproval. The phrases "no comments from the peanut gallery" or "quiet in the peanut gallery" are extensions of the name.[1]

In the late 1940s the Howdy Doody children's television show adopted the name to represent its audience of children.[2]

In culture[edit]

In recent times, the term has taken on new meanings with the advent of social networks and online chat rooms. "Peanut gallery" may also refer to a social network audience that passively observes a syndicated web feed or chat room[citation needed]. Alternatively, it may refer to the stream of open comments visible on certain types of blogs.[3]

A similar term was introduced to Brazilian football by coach Luis Felipe Scolari. He called Palmeiras' complaining audience that sat in the closest seats "Turma do Amendoim" ("peanut gang").[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Rowland, Ian (April 1999). "What's the origin of the expression ‘peanut gallery’?". The Straight Dope. Retrieved March 28, 2013. 
  2. ^ Smith, Andrew F. (2002). Peanuts: The Illustrious History of the Goober Pea. University of Illinois Press. p. 129. ISBN 978-0-252-02553-2. 
  3. ^ "Bacteriophages". BIO230 (Web log). Word press. Fall 2010. Retrieved May 31, 2013. 
  4. ^ "Felipão criou o apelido "Turma do Amendoim" no Palmeiras; leia trecho" [Felipão created the ‘Peanut gang’ nickname: read passage]. Folha de S. Paulo (in Portuguese) (Folha da manhã). Folha Online. November 9, 2009. Retrieved March 28, 2013.