verb (used with object), gouged, goug·ing.

verb (used without object), gouged, goug·ing.

to engage in swindling, overcharging, or the like: I bought my clothes there before they began gouging.

Origin of gouge

1300–50; Middle English < French < Late Latin gu(l)bia; compare Old Provençal goja, Spanish gubia; perhaps < Celtic; compare Old Irish gulba sting, Welsh gylf beak, Cornish gilb borer
Related formsgoug·er, nounun·gouged, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for gouged

gash, shovel, dredge, tunnel, scratch, dig, scrape, burrow, claw, groove, excavate

Examples from the Web for gouged

Contemporary Examples of gouged

Historical Examples of gouged

  • The plank that is used to form the bottom of the boat is not gouged out.

    Boys' Book of Model Boats

    Raymond Francis Yates

  • Theres no use in telling a young man what to do when he has been gouged.

    The Making of Bobby Burnit

    George Randolph Chester

  • He had gouged the eye out of the third, for some trifling difference of opinion.

    Frank Mildmay

    Captain Frederick Marryat

  • Ice and water wore off the nub and leveled the hill, then gouged out the gulch.

    Rimrock Trail

    J. Allan Dunn

  • He clasped his hands, pressed them till the fingers of one gouged the back of the other.

    The Innocents

    Sinclair Lewis

British Dictionary definitions for gouged


verb (mainly tr)

(usually foll by out) to scoop or force (something) out of its position, esp with the fingers or a pointed instrument
(sometimes foll by out) to cut (a hole or groove) in (something) with a sharp instrument or tool
US and Canadian informal to extort from
(also intr) Australian to dig for (opal)


a type of chisel with a blade that has a concavo-convex section
a mark or groove made with, or as if with, a gouge
geology a fine deposit of rock fragments, esp clay, occurring between the walls of a fault or mineral vein
US and Canadian informal extortion; swindling

Word Origin for gouge

C15: from French, from Late Latin gulbia a chisel, of Celtic origin
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 gouged



1560s, "to cut with a gouge," from gouge (n.). Meaning "to force out with a gouge" (especially of the eyes, in fighting) attested by 1800. Meaning "swindle" is American English colloquial from 1826 (implied in plural noun gougers). Related: Gouged; gouging.



mid-14c., "chisel with a concave blade," from Old French gouge, from Late Latin gubia, alteration of gulbia "hollow beveled chisel," probably from Gaulish (cf. Old Irish gulban "prick, prickle," Welsh gylfin "beak").

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

gouged in Medicine




A strong curved chisel used in bone surgery.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.