noun, often attributive
\ ˈgälf How to pronounce golf (audio) , ˈgȯlf, ˈgäf, ˈgȯf, sometimes ˈgəlf \

Definition of golf

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a game in which a player using special clubs attempts to sink a ball with as few strokes as possible into each of the 9 or 18 successive holes on a course


communications code word

Definition of Golf (Entry 2 of 2)

used as a code word for the letter g

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Other Words from golf


golf intransitive verb
golfer noun

Did You Know?

This is a game in which a player using special clubs attempts to sink a small ball into each of the nine or 18 successive holes on an outdoor course, using as few strokes as possible. Golf developed in Scotland as early as the 15th century; the courses were originally fields that herds of sheep had clipped short in their characteristic grazing style. Golf balls, originally made of wood, are now made of hard rubber. Clubs are known by the traditional names of “irons” and “woods”; today irons are more likely made of stainless steel than iron, and the heads of woods are usually made of metal such as steel or titanium instead of wood.

Examples of golf in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The sculpture shows Tatum standing stoically and holding a golf club. Ron Kroichick,, "PGA Championship drama: Sandy Tatum statue reaches Harding Park after scare in Mark Twain’s hometown," 1 Aug. 2020 For example, during an off day at the 2008 cross-country World Championships in Edinburgh, Scotland, his colleagues headed to St. Andrews to play golf. David Woods, The Indianapolis Star, "To be back at Butler 'fuels soul' of athletic trainer Ralph Reiff," 9 July 2020 The group was formed in 1947 to teach Black people to play golf and organize tournaments. Weldon B. Johnson, azcentral, "Phoenix's African American history: 10 significant landmarks and the stories behind them," 18 June 2020 Peña Nieto used to play golf on weekends; AMLO went to villages, talking to people and taking selfies. Enrique Krauze, The New York Review of Books, "Mexico’s Ruinous Messiah," 17 June 2020 My husband continues to play golf and run with his buddies; his life still goes on. Annie Lane, oregonlive, "Dear Annie: Constant caregiver worn to breaking point," 16 June 2020 Led by football, there are multiple athletes from every OSU sport except men’s and women’s golf. oregonlive, "Oregon State continues on a healthy path as another week, no new positive COVID-19 tests for its athletes," 14 July 2020 There were two armored police vehicles near the entrance to the golf club Sunday, similar to the ones during the first three nights of protests downtown. Evan Petzold, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Will Breathe protesters make noise at Rocket Mortgage Classic," 5 July 2020 Graham accompanied Trump on Sunday to the president’s northern Virginia golf club. Jennifer Epstein,, "Trump Says Report on Russian Afghanistan Bounties Isn’t Credible," 29 June 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'golf.' 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 golf


15th century, in the meaning defined above

Communications code word

1952, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for golf


Middle English (Scots)

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Learn More about golf

Time Traveler for golf

Time Traveler

The first known use of golf was in the 15th century

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Statistics for golf

Last Updated

4 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Golf.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for golf


How to pronounce Golf (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of golf

: an outdoor game in which players use special clubs (called golf clubs) to try to hit a small ball with as few strokes as possible into each of 9 or 18 holes


\ ˈgälf How to pronounce golf (audio) , ˈgȯlf \

Kids Definition of golf

: a game played by hitting a small ball with special clubs into each of nine or 18 holes in as few strokes as possible

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More from Merriam-Webster on golf

Spanish Central: Translation of golf

Nglish: Translation of golf for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of golf for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about golf

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