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A man receiving a wedgie

A wedgie occurs when a person's underwear or other garments are wedged between the buttocks. While a wedgie can be created naturally, the term is usually associated with a prank or as a form of bullying. When a person is on the receiving end of a wedgie, their underwear is forcibly pulled up by a second person.

Wedgies are commonly featured in popular works, either as a form of low comedy or as a behaviour representative of bullying. In such works, briefs are usually the type of underpants that a wedgie is performed upon.[1][2]



A girl receiving a regular wedgie

As a prank or form of bullying, there are a number of variants to the normal wedgie. It is wholly impractical to list every variant, as the names and processes are entirely subjective; however, there are a few better-known variants.

  • The Melvin is a variant where the victim's underwear is pulled up from the front, to cause injury to the victim's genitals.[3] The female variant is sometimes called a Minerva.
  • The atomic wedgie entails hoisting the waistband of the receiver's underwear up and over their head.[3][4]
  • The hanging wedgie is a variant in which the victim is hung from his or her underwear, elevated above the ground.[5]


On April 6, 2006, Fox News reported on an Albany, New York teacher who was arrested for endangering the welfare of a child for giving a 10-year-old student a wedgie.[6][7]

In 2007, eight-year-old second graders Jared and Justin Serovich came up with "wedgie-proof" underwear at the Central Ohio Invention Competition 2007 where their invention got them into the finals.[8]

See also


  1. ^ wedgie. The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. Accessed 30 November 2007 via
  2. ^ No More Bullies, School Counselor Resources.
  3. ^ a b Curran, David (2007-01-04). "Gwyneth And 'The Atomic Wedgie'". (San Francisco Chronicle). Retrieved 2009-07-07. 
  4. ^ Krysis, B. M. (2004). The Angry Plumber and Other Woefully True Bathroom Calamities. Trafford Publishing. pp. 72. ISBN 9781412023597. Retrieved 2009-07-06. 
  5. ^ Stuever, Hank (2002-09-02). "At School, a Most Uncomfortable Subject". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2009-07-07. 
  6. ^ Hume, Brit (2006-04-06). "Charges for Giving a Wedgie". Fox News.,2933,190761,00.html. 
  7. ^ Greg Tananbaum and Dan Martin (2005). Atomic Wedgies, Wet Willies, and Other Acts of Roguery. Santa Monica Press. ISBN 978-1595800008. 
  8. ^ "Twins, 8, invent 'wedgie-proof' underpants". MSNBC. 2007-11-02. 

Simple English

A wedgie occurs when a persons underwear is forcibly pulled up their buttocks. A wedgie is usually given by bullies to humiliate their target, or as a prank between friends.

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