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[spoo r, spawr, spohr] /spʊər, spɔr, spoʊr/
a track or trail, especially that of a wild animal pursued as game.
verb (used with or without object)
to track by or follow a spoor.
Origin of spoor
1815-25; < Afrikaans spoor < Dutch; cognate with Old English, Old Norse spor, German Spur; cf. speer
Related forms
spoorer, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for spoor
Historical Examples
  • Now they were casting about for a sign, like bloodhounds seeking the spoor of an enemy.

    Lords of the Stratosphere Arthur J. Burks
  • They continued to follow the "spoor" of the two hounds, left so plainly for their guidance.

    Pathfinder Alan Douglas
  • At the end of April the spoor of two foxes was seen in the snow.

    From Pole to Pole

    Sven Anders Hedin
  • They might discover the spoor of his horse, and come to him.

    The Giraffe Hunters Mayne Reid
  • Amongst other spoor, he was pleased to observe that of the hippopotamus.

    The Giraffe Hunters Mayne Reid
  • Do you think, Congo, we had better follow the spoor we made in coming here?

    The Giraffe Hunters Mayne Reid
  • The spoor of the giraffes must have been found and followed, or they would have been back before then.

    The Giraffe Hunters Mayne Reid
  • Moreover, they had passed within twelve hours; I could tell that by the spoor.

    Allan's Wife H. Rider Haggard
  • The spoor of the waggons ran in the direction I wished to go, so I followed it.

    Allan's Wife H. Rider Haggard
  • They struck the spoor of the waggons three days ago and followed it.

    Allan's Wife H. Rider Haggard
British Dictionary definitions for spoor


/spʊə; spɔː/
the trail of an animal or person, esp as discernible to the human eye
to track (an animal) by following its trail
Derived Forms
spoorer, noun
Word Origin
C19: from Afrikaans, from Middle Dutch spor; related to Old English spor track, Old High German spor; see spur
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 spoor

"track, trace," 1823, from Afrikaans spoor, from Middle Dutch spor, cognate with Old English spor "footprint, track, trace" (see spurn).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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