[gah-nuh f]

noun Slang.

a thief, swindler, crook, or rascal.

Also gonif, goniff.

Origin of ganef

1920–25; < Yiddish < Hebrew gannābh Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for ganef

Historical Examples of ganef

  • A Ganef like your father is stealing the money, too, I bet yer.

  • Maybe he ain't no more a ganef as I am, Mawruss, but just the same, he is in jail and I ain't.

    Abe and Mawruss

    Montague Glass

  • "A ganef you couldn't tell what he would do at all," Linkheimer rejoined, and Abe rose to his feet.

    Abe and Mawruss

    Montague Glass

British Dictionary definitions for ganef


ganev or ganof gonif or gonof

noun US slang

an unscrupulous opportunist who stoops to sharp practice

Word Origin for ganef

from Yiddish, from Hebrew gannābh thief, from gānnabh he stole
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