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[grohts] /groʊts/
noun, (used with a singular or plural verb)
hulled grain, as wheat or oats, broken into fragments.
hulled kernels of oats, buckwheat, or barley.
Origin of groats
before 1100; Middle English grotes (plural), Old English grot meal; akin to grits


[groht] /groʊt/
a silver coin of England, equal to four pennies, issued from 1279 to 1662.
1325-75; Middle English groot < Middle Dutch groot large, name of a large coin; see great Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for groats
Historical Examples
  • But this being so, and you but half-hearted, I tell you, it is too dangerous a game to play for groats.

    The Wild Geese Stanley John Weyman
  • You silly boy, we don't play for groats here as you do at Cambridge.

  • "A goose, stuffed with groats, would be acceptable," put in Raisky.

    The Precipice Ivan Goncharov
  • A practical conversation about groats, a goose, and a quarrel with Grandmother.

    The Precipice Ivan Goncharov
  • First we peeped in the window between the glasses of groats.

    What Happened to Inger Johanne Dikken Zwilgmeyer
  • You will find water in that pail, and the groats in that cupboard.

    Polish Fairy Tales A. J. Glinski
  • And I have been surprised at your not asking where the word , groats, comes from.

  • Can you tell me, mister, in what county o' Scotland is John o' groats?

    Carnival Compton Mackenzie
  • If I had said a peck of groats he could not have appeared more indifferent.

    A Transient Guest Edgar Saltus
  • When Jan came home, she said to him, "Jan, Hereafterthis has been for the bag of groats."

British Dictionary definitions for groats


plural noun
the hulled and crushed grain of oats, wheat, or certain other cereals
the parts of oat kernels used as food
Word Origin
Old English grot particle; related to grota fragment, as in meregrota pearl; see grit, grout


an English silver coin worth four pennies, taken out of circulation in the 17th century
Word Origin
C14: from Middle Dutch groot, from Middle Low German gros, from Medieval Latin (denarius) grossus thick (coin); see groschen
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 groats

"hulled grain coarsely ground or crushed; oatmeal," early 14c., from grot "piece, fragment," from Old English grot "particle," from same root as grit. The word also meant "excrement in pellets" (mid-15c.).



medieval European coin, late 14c., probably from Middle Dutch groot, elliptical use of adj. meaning "great, big" (in sense of "thick"); see great. Recognized from 13c. in various nations, in 14c. it was roughly one-eighth an ounce of silver; the English groat coined 1351-2 was worth four pence. Also cf. groschen.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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