- a person, especially a man.
- a devotee of jazz.
verb (used with object), cat·ted, cat·ting.
verb (used without object), cat·ted, cat·ting.
- to spend one's time aimlessly or idly.
- to seek sexual activity indiscriminately; tomcat.
Origin of cat
Definition for cats (2 of 2)
Examples from the Web for cats
A number of clearly partisan studies have suggested that cats are unfeeling and sociopathic.Sorry, Internet: Pope Francis Didn't Open Paradise to Pets|Candida Moss|December 14, 2014|DAILY BEAST
None, however, have been as all-out cute as this one, a shot-for-shot remake of the teaser with dogs and cats.
Yes, animal rights activists are trying to ban the eating of cats and dogs in Switzerland.Will the Swiss Quit Cooking their Kittens and Puppies?|Barbie Latza Nadeau|November 30, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The Sailor Senshi rely on a central command which is run by two cats, Artemis and Luna.‘Sailor Moon’ Is an Oasis for Superheroes Who Can Save the Universe in Heels|Rich Goldstein|November 26, 2014|DAILY BEAST
She lives in Portland, Oregon, with two cats, one Canadian, and 60,000 honeybees.
The symptoms were the same as those observed in cats and rabbits after the administration of caffein.The Toxicity of Caffein|William Salant
Cats plunged toward the new radiation in the box beyond the hold entrance.Feline Red|Robert Sampson
But cats will often leave a house and never return, if they have been threatened with a severe licking.Cats|W. Gordon Stables
Cats often show that they possess some of the vices as well as some of the virtues of human beings.Stories of Animal Sagacity|W.H.G. Kingston
A supply of pure water should be kept within the cats reach.The Cat|Philip M. Rule
British Dictionary definitions for cats (1 of 5)
n acronym for
British Dictionary definitions for cats (2 of 5)
British Dictionary definitions for cats (3 of 5)
verb cats, catting or catted
Word Origin for cat
British Dictionary definitions for cats (4 of 5)
British Dictionary definitions for cats (5 of 5)
- short for catalytic converter
- (as modifier)a cat car
Word Origin and History for cats (1 of 2)
Old English catt (c.700), from West Germanic (c.400-450), from Proto-Germanic *kattuz (cf. Old Frisian katte, Old Norse köttr, Dutch kat, Old High German kazza, German Katze), from Late Latin cattus.
The near-universal European word now, it appeared in Europe as Latin catta (Martial, c.75 C.E.), Byzantine Greek katta (c.350) and was in general use on the continent by c.700, replacing Latin feles. Probably ultimately Afro-Asiatic (cf. Nubian kadis, Berber kadiska, both meaning "cat"). Arabic qitt "tomcat" may be from the same source. Cats were domestic in Egypt from c.2000 B.C.E., but not a familiar household animal to classical Greeks and Romans. The nine lives have been proverbial since at least 1560s.
The Late Latin word also is the source of Old Irish and Gaelic cat, Welsh kath, Breton kaz, Italian gatto, Spanish gato, French chat (12c.). Independent, but ultimately from the same source are words in the Slavic group: Old Church Slavonic kotuka, kotel'a, Bulgarian kotka, Russian koška, Polish kot, along with Lithuanian kate and non-Indo-European Finnish katti, which is from Lithuanian.
Extended to lions, tigers, etc. c.1600. As a term of contempt for a woman, from early 13c. Slang sense of "prostitute" is from at least c.1400. Slang sense of "fellow, guy," is from 1920, originally in U.S. Black English; narrower sense of "jazz enthusiast" is recorded from 1931.
Cat's paw (1769, but cat's foot in the same sense, 1590s) refers to old folk tale in which the monkey tricks the cat into pawing chestnuts from a fire; the monkey gets the nuts, the cat gets a burnt paw. Cat bath "hurried or partial cleaning" is from 1953. Cat burglar is from 1907, so called for stealth. Cat-witted "small-minded, obstinate, and spiteful" (1670s) deserved to survive. For Cat's meow, cat's pajamas, see bee's knees.
Word Origin and History for cats (1 of 2)
1975, medical acronym for computerized axial tomography or something like it. Related: CAT scan.
Medicine definitions for cats
Idioms and Phrases with cats
In addition to the idioms beginning with cat
- cat got one's tongue
- alley cat
- bell the cat
- curiosity killed the cat
- fat cat
- grin like a Cheshire cat
- let the cat out of the bag
- like a cat on a hot brick
- look like something the cat dragged in
- look like the cat that ate the canary
- more than one way to skin a cat
- not enough room to swing a cat
- play cat and mouse
- rain cats and dogs
- when the cat's away