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[vwah-yah-zhur, voi-uh-; French vwa-ya-zhœr] /ˌvwɑ yɑˈʒɜr, ˌvɔɪ ə-; French vwa yaˈʒœr/
noun, plural voyageurs
[vwah-yah-zhurz, voi-uh-; French vwa-ya-zhœr] /ˌvwɑ yɑˈʒɜrz, ˌvɔɪ ə-; French vwa yaˈʒœr/ (Show IPA)
(in Canada) a person who is an expert woodsman, boatman, and guide in remote regions, especially one employed by fur companies to transport supplies to and from their distant stations.
Origin of voyageur
1785-95; < French: traveler, equivalent to voyag(er) to travel (derivative of voyage journey; see voyage) + -eur -eur
Can be confused
voyager, voyageur. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for voyageur
Historical Examples
  • The day of the voyageur was gone, and lines of steamboats crowded its wharf.

  • When Ned said this the French-Canadian voyageur looked up and nodded.

    Boy Scouts on Hudson Bay G. Harvey Ralphson
  • It was a man,” the voyageur answered, “and he was swimming this way.

    The Cryptogram William Murray Graydon
  • A voyageur fell at my side, and another dropped in front of me.

    The Cryptogram William Murray Graydon
  • And with equal promptness came the “Eight hundred” of the voyageur.

    Lost Face Jack London
  • With a look of poignant disappointment, the voyageur succumbed.

    Lost Face Jack London
  • We have plenty meat, and I sing like a voyageur while I build the fire.

    The Skeleton On Round Island Mary Hartwell Catherwood
  • How unlike the denizen of the desert, the voyageur of the prairie sea!

    The Scalp Hunters Mayne Reid
  • And thus, though the parallel is only logical, has it been with the term “voyageur.”

    Western Characters J. L. McConnel
  • The voyageur possessed it, in common with all his countrymen.

    Western Characters J. L. McConnel
British Dictionary definitions for voyageur


noun (Canadian)
(history) a boatman employed by one of the early fur-trading companies, esp in the interior
a woodsman, guide, trapper, boatman, or explorer, esp in the North
Word Origin
C19: from French: traveller, from voyager to voyage
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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