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goldfish

[gohld-fish]
See more synonyms for goldfish on Thesaurus.com
noun, plural (especially collectively) gold·fish, (especially referring to two or more kinds or species) gold·fish·es.
  1. a small, usually yellow or orange fish, Carassius auratus, of the carp family, native to China, bred in many varieties and often kept in fishbowls and pools.
  2. garibaldi(def 2).
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Origin of goldfish

First recorded in 1690–1700; gold + fish
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for goldfish

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Kitty threw a crust to the goldfish and watched them swirl about it greedily.

    The Lure of the Mask

    Harold MacGrath

  • It is all true—my dream, and what I saw myself do in the bowl of goldfish.

    Possessed

    Cleveland Moffett

  • To be sure, she had asked him not to use the water from the goldfish globe; but he just would.

    Torchy

    Sewell Ford

  • We don't need mercury any more than a goldfish needs a gas-mask.

    Spacehounds of IPC

    Edward Elmer Smith

  • I guess he always did look like a goldfish, but I mean even more like, then.


British Dictionary definitions for goldfish

goldfish

noun plural -fish or -fishes
  1. a freshwater cyprinid fish, Carassius auratus, of E Europe and Asia, esp China, widely introduced as a pond or aquarium fish. It resembles the carp and has a typically golden or orange-red coloration
  2. any of certain similar ornamental fishes, esp the golden orfeSee orfe
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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

Word Origin and History for goldfish

n.

1690s, from gold + fish (n.); introduced into England from China, where they are native. A goldfish bowl, figurative of a situation of no privacy, was in use by 1935.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper