noun wild·cat \ˈwī(-ə)l(d)-ˌkat\

: a kind of cat that lives in the wilderness

plural wildcats

Full Definition of WILDCAT

a :  an Old World cat (Felis silvestris) that resembles but is heavier in build than the domestic tabby cat and is usually held to be among the ancestors of the domestic cat
b or plural wildcat :  any of various small or medium-sized cats (as the lynx or ocelot)
c :  a feral domestic cat
:  a savage quick-tempered person
a :  wildcat money
b :  a wildcat oil or gas well
c :  a wildcat strike

First Known Use of WILDCAT

14th century



Definition of WILDCAT

a (1) :  issued by a financially irresponsible banking establishment <wildcat currency> (2) :  financially irresponsible or unreliable <wildcat banks>
b :  operating, produced, or carried on outside the bounds of standard or legitimate business practices <wildcat insurance schemes — H. H. Reichard>
c :  of, relating to, or being an oil or gas well drilled in territory not known to be productive
d :  initiated by a group of workers without formal union approval or in violation of a contract <a wildcat strike> <wildcat work stoppages>
a of a cartridge :  having a bullet of standard caliber but using an expanded case or a case designed for a bullet of greater caliber necked down for the smaller bullet
b of a firearm :  using wildcat cartridges

First Known Use of WILDCAT


Other Mining and Drilling Terms

ore, trepan, wildcat



Definition of WILDCAT

intransitive verb
:  to prospect and drill an experimental oil or gas well or sink a mine shaft in territory not known to be productive

First Known Use of WILDCAT

circa 1903

Other Mining and Drilling Terms

ore, trepan
WILDCAT[3] Defined for Kids


noun wild·cat \ˈwīld-ˌkat\

Definition of WILDCAT for Kids

:  a wild animal (as an ocelot or lynx) of the cat family that is of small or medium size


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