gnome

1
[ nohm ]
/ noʊm /

noun

(in folklore) one of a species of diminutive beings, usually described as shriveled little old men, that inhabit the interior of the earth and act as guardians of its treasures; troll.
an expert in monetary or financial affairs; international banker or financier: the gnomes of Zurich.

Origin of gnome

1
1705–15; < French < New Latin gnomus, perhaps < Greek gnṓmē; see gnome2

SYNONYMS FOR gnome

1 See goblin, sylph.

Related forms

gnom·ish, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for gnomish

  • All his brave resolutions seemed to drain away before their old, gnomish faces.

    The Colors of Space|Marion Zimmer Bradley
  • Presently his face, preternaturally solemn and gnomish behind the goggles, protruded over the rim.

    The Unspeakable Perk|Samuel Hopkins Adams
  • A quick visualization of that gnomish, froggish face was enough to dispel the suspicion.

    The Unspeakable Perk|Samuel Hopkins Adams
  • Out from the yellow heart of the pansy-blackness her small, grave, gnomish face peered after him with pristine frankness.

    Little Eve Edgarton|Eleanor Hallowell Abbott

British Dictionary definitions for gnomish (1 of 2)

gnome

1
/ (nəʊm) /

noun

one of a species of legendary creatures, usually resembling small misshapen old men, said to live in the depths of the earth and guard buried treasure
the statue of a gnome, esp in a garden
a very small or ugly person
facetious, or derogatory an international banker or financier (esp in the phrase gnomes of Zürich)

Derived Forms

gnomish, adjective

Word Origin for gnome

C18: from French, from New Latin gnomus, coined by Paracelsus, of obscure origin

British Dictionary definitions for gnomish (2 of 2)

gnome

2
/ (nəʊm) /

noun

a short pithy saying or maxim expressing a general truth or principle

Word Origin for gnome

C16: from Greek gnōmē, from gignōskein to know
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