Try Our Apps
Dictionary.com

follow Dictionary.com

The Word of the Year is...

gopher1

[goh-fer] /ˈgoʊ fər/
noun
1.
any of several ground squirrels of the genus Citellus, of the prairie regions of North America.
5.
(initial capital letter) a native or inhabitant of Minnesota (used as a nickname).
6.
(initial capital letter) Computers.
  1. a protocol for a menu-based system of accessing documents on the Internet.
  2. any program that implements this protocol.
verb (used without object)
7.
Mining.
  1. to mine unsystematically.
  2. to enlarge a hole, as in loose soil, with successively larger blasts.
Origin of gopher1
1785-1795
1785-95; earlier megopher, magopher gopher tortoise; of obscure origin; spelling copies gopher wood
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for gophering
Historical Examples
  • They could not have missed seeing the gophering that the old man had done on the hillside above The Four Pools.

    The Heritage of the Hills Arthur P. Hankins
British Dictionary definitions for gophering

gopher

/ˈɡəʊfə/
noun
1.
Also called pocket gopher. any burrowing rodent of the family Geomyidae, of North and Central America, having a thickset body, short legs, and cheek pouches
2.
another name for ground squirrel
3.
any burrowing tortoise of the genus Gopherus, of SE North America
4.
gopher snake, another name for bull snake
Word Origin
C19: shortened from earlier megopher or magopher, 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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for gophering

gopher

n.

1812, American English, perhaps an Englishing of Louisiana French gaufre "honeycomb, waffle," said to have been used by French settlers in reference to small mammals on analogy of the structure of their burrows, from Old French gaufre, of Frankish origin. The rodent was the nickname of people from Arkansas (1845) and later Minnesota (1872). The gopherwood tree of the Bible (used by Noah to make the ark, Gen. vi:14) is unrelated; it is from Hebrew gofer, perhaps meaning the cypress.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for gophering

gopher 1

noun

  1. A young thief or hoodlum: tough West Side gophers who wouldn't hesitate to use a gun (1893+)
  2. A safecracker (1901+ Underworld)
  3. A safe or vault (1970s+ Underworld); (1870s+)
  4. gofer

gopher 2

verb

To hit a GOFER BALL in baseball: only about the fifth or sixth that Orosco had gophered home the eventual gamer

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source
gophering in the Bible

a tree from the wood of which Noah was directed to build the ark (Gen. 6:14). It is mentioned only there. The LXX. render this word by "squared beams," and the Vulgate by "planed wood." Other versions have rendered it "pine" and "cedar;" but the weight of authority is in favour of understanding by it the cypress tree, which grows abundantly in Chaldea and Armenia.

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for gopher

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for gophering

0
0
Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for gophering