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[goof] /guf/ Slang.
verb (used without object)
to blunder; make an error, misjudgment, etc.
to waste or kill time; evade work or responsibility (often followed by off or around):
Exam week is not a time to goof off. We goofed around till train time.
verb (used with object)
to spoil or make a mess of (something); botch; bungle (often followed by up):
You really goofed up the job.
a foolish or stupid person.
a mistake or blunder, especially one due to carelessness.
a source of fun or cause for amusement:
We short-sheeted his bunk just for a goof.
Verb phrases
goof on, Slang. to tease, ridicule, or mock; make fun of.
Origin of goof
1915-20; apparently variant of obsolete goff dolt < Middle French goffe awkward, stupid Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for goofed
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • "We—uh—realize we goofed yesterday on that beach party," Tom said sheepishly.

  • Everything had gone perfectly; not even Valkanhayn's gang had goofed.

    Space Viking Henry Beam Piper
  • That must have been a build-up, but Ben goofed his cue to move in on Sco and me for a close.

    The Real Hard Sell William W Stuart
  • Let them think they goofed with the shuttles and hit you and Chris.

    Badge of Infamy Lester del Rey
  • "Somebody must have goofed bad on the Far Side, for it to miss orbit like that," Ramos grated.

    The Planet Strappers Raymond Zinke Gallun
British Dictionary definitions for goofed


a foolish error or mistake
a stupid person
to bungle (something); botch
(intransitive; often foll by about or around) to fool (around); mess (about)
(transitive) to dope with drugs
(US & Canadian) (intransitive) often foll by off. to waste time; idle
Word Origin
C20: probably from (dialect) goff simpleton, from Old French goffe clumsy, from Italian goffo, of obscure origin
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 goofed



1916, American English, "stupid person," perhaps a variant of English dialect goff "foolish clown" (1869), from 16c. goffe, probably from Middle French goffe "awkward, stupid," of uncertain origin. Or English goffe may be from Middle English goffen "speak in a frivolous manner," possibly from Old English gegaf "buffoonery," and gaffetung "scolding." Sense of "a blunder" is c.1954, probably influenced by gaffe.


"waste time," 1932; "make a mistake," 1941, from goof (n.). Goof off "loaf" is also from 1941. Related: Goofed; goofing.

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



Intoxicated with a narcotic, esp marijuana; high, stoned (1950s+ Narcotics)



  1. A stupid person; boob, klutz, sap: two goofs can't agree on how many orgasms they should have/ High school girls now talk of the ''goofs we go with'' (1916+)
  2. An insane person; mental case: He couldn't have acted more like a goof (1940s+)
  3. One's cellmate (1930s+ Prison)
  4. A blunder; bad mistake; boo-boo: They covered their goof quite well (1950s+ Jive talk)


  1. : You goofed again; it's a one-way street (1941+)
  2. To pass one's time idly and pleasantly; goof off: In Sarajevo, members of a student volunteer brigade goofed and joked as they worked (1932+)
  3. goof around (1940s+)
  4. To fool; kid: Don't goof your grandpa (1940s+)

[fr British dialect goof, goff, ''fool'']

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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