\ ˈgōt \
plural goats

Definition of goat 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a or plural goat : any of various hollow-horned ruminant mammals (especially of the genus Capra) related to the sheep but of lighter build and with backwardly arching horns, a short tail, and usually straight hair especially : one (Capra hircus) long domesticated for its milk, wool, and flesh

b capitalized : capricorn

2 : a licentious man : lecher

\ ˈgōt \
variants: or less commonly G.O.A.T.
plural GOATs also G.O.A.T.s

Definition of GOAT (Entry 2 of 2)

: the greatest of all time : the most accomplished and successful individual in the history of a particular sport or category of performance or activity As much fun as it is to debate who is the greatest in NBA history, it's pointless, a question for which there can be no definitive answer…. The list of players who could be considered the GOAT is long, and each one is worthy in his own right. —Nancy Armour There's no denying what Aaron Rodgers has done in his career, but to say Rodgers is the GOAT is a big statement considering what Tom Brady has accomplished.Pro Football Weekly Former President (and arguably the GOAT of post-presidency careers) Jimmy Carter is leasing 10 acres of his Georgia peanut farm to SolAmerica to create a 1.3MW solar array. —Walter Einenkel If championships alone are the measuring stick, then Michael [Jordan] is probably going to remain the popular choice as the GOAT. But if I can go on aesthetics alone, I know I'd rather watch LeBron [James]. —Bob Ryan

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Other words from goat


goatish \ˈgō-tish \ adjective
goatlike \ˈgōt-ˌlīk \ adjective

Synonyms for goat

Synonyms: Noun

fall guy, scapegoat, whipping boy

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Examples of goat in a Sentence


In the last inning, a home run can make you the hero, and a strikeout can make you the goat. an unhappy childhood was the goat he used to rationalize every failure and shortcoming

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Bonenfant’s business, Fraser Farm Goatscaping, deploys goats and sometimes sheep to clean up yards. Nancy Shohet West, BostonGlobe.com, "Need your lawn mowed? Bring on the goats.," 29 June 2018 The goats and their two guardian dogs are reportedly being rented from Atlanta-based Get Your Goat Rentals. Southern Living, "The City of Savannah's Newest Landscapers Are a Team of 53 Hungry Goats," 27 June 2018 The food arrived on heaping platters: charcuterie; pickled vegetables; a big dollop of Laychee, Pennyroyal’s signature goat cheese; a slab of Boont Corners Vintage Tomme, a tangy, salty goat-and-sheep-milk cheese. Jody Rosen, Smithsonian, "This Secret Corner of California Is a Paradise for Lovers of Great Food and Top-Notch Wines," 14 June 2018 Then, the rider must move aggressively toward the goat and subdue it. Brett Hoffman, star-telegram, "Focus, hard work help Alvarado junior clinch girls high school rodeo title | Fort Worth Star-Telegram," 20 May 2018 Kids will love the resident goats and large playground and cats roaming the property. Richard Tribou, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Explore Florida's DeSoto County: Taming the Peace River," 6 May 2018 Shebu Issa, an assistant at a Quranic school, stood in one doorway as goats and children roamed the sandy roads. Carley Petesch, Fox News, "US builds drone base in Niger, crossroads of extremism fight," 23 Apr. 2018 Soza's schedule of upcoming cat, goat, and alpaca classes is online at sozafitnessandwellness.com. Jennifer Heilman, cleveland.com, "Fitness center provides four-legged fun," 21 Mar. 2018 Periodically, Caribbean Restaurant also offers oxtail, goat and rabbit, a reminder of the great bounty typical of this beleaguered island. Frank Cohen, courant.com, "Caribbean Restaurant, Meriden," 6 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'goat.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of goat


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Abbreviation or noun

1996, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for goat


Middle English gote, from Old English gāt; akin to Old High German geiz goat, Old Norse geit, Latin haedus kid

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Statistics for goat

Last Updated

20 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for goat

The first known use of goat was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for goat



English Language Learners Definition of goat

: a small animal that is related to the sheep

the goat : a person who is blamed for a loss or failure


\ ˈgōt \

Kids Definition of goat

: an animal that has hollow horns that curve backward, is related to the sheep, and is often raised for its milk, wool, and meat

Other words from goat

goatlike \-ˌlīk \ adjective

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Comments on goat

What made you want to look up goat? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to deposit or conceal in a hiding place

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