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[gohl-dee-loks] /ˈgoʊl diˌlɒks/
noun, plural goldilocks.
(used with a singular verb) a person with golden hair.
(usually initial capital letter) not being extreme or not varying drastically between extremes, especially between hot and cold: a Goldilocks economy that is neither overheated nor too cold to cause a recession;
a goldilocks planet such as Earth.
See also Goldilocks zone.
Origin of goldilocks
1540-50; obsolete goldy golden + lock2 + -s3; from the fairy tale Goldilocks and the Three Bears, in which the golden-haired Goldilocks rejects uncomfortable extremes, as porridge that is too hot or too cold Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for goldilocks


noun (functioning as sing)
a Eurasian plant, Aster linosyris (or Linosyris vulgaris), with clusters of small yellow flowers: family Asteraceae (composites)
a Eurasian ranunculaceous woodland plant, Ranunculus auricomus, with yellow flowers See also buttercup
(sometimes capital) a person, esp a girl, with light blond hair
(modifier; sometimes capital) not prone to extremes of temperature, volatility, etc: a goldilocks planet, a goldilocks economy
Word Origin
(for sense 4): C20: from the fairy tale Goldilocks and the Three Bears, in which the heroine prefers the porridge that is neither too hot nor too cold
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for goldilocks


name for a person with bright yellow hair, 1540s, from adj. form of gold + lock in the hair sense. The story of the Three Bears first was printed in Robert Southey's miscellany "The Doctor" (1837), but the central figure there was a bad-tempered old woman. Southey did not claim to have invented the story, and older versions have been traced, either involving an old woman or a "silver-haired" girl (though in at least one version it is a fox who enters the house). The identification of the girl as Goldilocks is attested only from c.1875.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for goldilocks



  1. Any pretty blonde woman •Often used ironically: Well, thought Jimmy, it won't be because of you, goldilocks (1598+)
  2. A burglar who breaks into a house, eats, and otherwise makes himself at home, but takes nothing of value (1990s+)

[second sense fr the folk tale Goldilocks and the Three Bears]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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