I have seen, usually in Internet meme jokes, the term "herp derp" being used in a derogatory sense, but I don't know what it means exactly — apart from the fact that it seems to be related to dumbness or irrelevant statements.

What does it mean exactly? Is it some kind of slang? What are its origins and meaning?

(Urban Dictionary doesn't help much in this case).

  • -1 Inadequate background research effort? knowyourmeme.com/memes/harp-darp-herp-derp -- makes for interesting reading.
    – Kris
    Commented Dec 14, 2012 at 15:26
  • 2
    @Kris Know Your Meme is not listed in the list of commonly-available references maintained on this site's meta (meta.english.stackexchange.com/questions/2573/…). Yes, it's possible for a user to look the answer up there, but it's not a resource everyone knows about in the same way that a dictionary or Wikipedia is, and a user who's unfamiliar with it could be excused for assuming that a site on the "Cheezburger Network" isn't a reliable reference.
    – user867
    Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 2:16
  • @user867 google.com/webhp?#q="herp-derp" I don't think Google Search is too much of home work. joulesm found it, OP could.
    – Kris
    Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 6:08
  • @Kris What about the last 22 words of my comment?
    – user867
    Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 6:16
  • @user867 I don't think I needed to comment on that part. Please read the FAQ if you like more details. english.stackexchange.com/help
    – Kris
    Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 6:18

1 Answer 1


According to Know Your Meme, "herp derp" is an expression used to indicate that someone is unintelligent or making ignorant statements.

It is derived from derp, which apparently was first used in a 1998 movie called BASEketball.

  • 7
    ...and further, derp is derived from der + excrescent /p/, where the excrescent /p/ is the same one found in yup,nope, and wellp. Commented Dec 14, 2012 at 15:47
  • 3
    @MarkBeadles- I like excrescent. Let's see if I can remember it.
    – Jim
    Commented Dec 14, 2012 at 17:10
  • @mark - do you have a reference for that (e.g. the screenwriters) ? Commented Jan 17, 2019 at 17:19

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