\ ˈgüs \
plural geese\ˈgēs \

Definition of goose 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a : any of numerous large waterfowl (family Anatidae) that are intermediate between the swans and ducks and have long necks, feathered lores, and reticulate tarsi

b : a female goose as distinguished from a gander

3 plural gooses : a tailor's smoothing iron with a gooseneck handle

4 plural gooses : a poke between the buttocks


goosed; goosing

Definition of goose (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to poke between the buttocks with an upward thrust

2 : to increase the activity, speed, power, intensity, or amount of : spur an effort to goose newsstand sales

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Examples of goose in a Sentence


don't be such a silly goose—you're dressed just fine for the party

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

In the marsh, ducks, geese and bald eagles are flourishing across the four major flyways of North America. Tom Stienstra,, "Chart-buster times: salmon to whales, bears to bighorns," 8 July 2018 An employee for Knox Swan and Dog discovered the cygnets missing while checking areas for geese Saturday afternoon. Karen Berkowitz,, "Apparent theft of day-old baby swans angers Highland Park neighbors," 5 June 2018 The sheriff's department also is looking for two men who were driving their boats at geese and then at a police officer on Cass Lake. Jc Reindl, Detroit Free Press, "Oakland County lakes see drowning, boat fire, watercraft collision," 28 May 2018 The cause of death for the geese and ducks was not stated in the release. Michael Katz, idahostatesman, "31 dead geese found discarded in Kuna | Idaho Statesman," 7 Feb. 2018 Hunting - Guide Harlan Boettcher of Prairie Waterfowl reported good combo shoots for teal and geese. Bink Grimes, Houston Chronicle, "Outdoors report: Jan. 11," 10 Jan. 2018 The goose, a rather unspectacular bird, has made several long-lasting contributions to society. John Schandelmeier, Anchorage Daily News, "Some words on birds and their impact on Alaska and the rest of the world," 24 June 2018 The goose, packed into a laundry bag by a Progressive Field clubhouse attendant, will assume its customary position in the Tigers’ dugout. Anthony Fenech, Detroit Free Press, "After embarrassing week, Detroit Tigers to have mental toughness tested," 24 June 2018 In addition to the rabbits and the goose, Kiss said the Nikita killed five chickens and a turkey. Benjamin Brown, Fox News, "Dog owner slapped with dozens of charges after Husky goes on animal 'killing spree'," 4 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Since on balance Republican voters have shown more concern about SCOTUS than Democrats (as reflected in 2016 exit polls), a national obsession over the topic might goose GOP turnout disproportionately. Ed Kilgore, Daily Intelligencer, "How Will the SCOTUS Confirmation Fight Affect the Midterms?," 28 June 2018 But a strong market for safeties among well-to-do women goosed production, and competition among manufacturers reduced prices, making the bikes affordable to more would-be riders — and further fueling demand. Aaron Gilbreath, Longreads, "The Wheel, the Woman, and the Human Body," 6 July 2018 Murphy said there's still time to sell the cuts — especially if wages are rising and GOP candidates make the case the tax cuts deserve some credit for goosing economic growth. Tory Newmyer, Washington Post, "The Finance 202: Here's why the tax cuts are such a hard sell for Republicans," 20 Apr. 2018 Its first scene is an extended hallucination in which Peter Ksander’s set, goosed by Keith Skretch’s video, appears to flicker and spasm. New York Times, "Review: ‘This Was the End,’ a Spectral Riff on Chekhov," 10 June 2018 The latter set, like Ghost’s Prequelle, is goosed by sales generated from a ticket/album sale redemption offer. Keith Caulfield, Billboard, "Kanye West Earns Eighth No. 1 Album on Billboard 200 Chart With 'Ye'," 10 June 2018 In 2017, goosed by the Facebook marketing machine, the Stories feature really took off. Jefferson Graham, USA TODAY, "Is Snapchat over? These users were miffed even before celebrities like Rihanna blasted the app," 27 Mar. 2018 And much of that push is coming from activist hedge funds, many of which are incentivized to goose their own investment returns in the near term. Clifton Leaf, Fortune, "Why Companies That Manage for The Long Term Perform Far Better. And Why Most Still Don’t," 21 May 2018 The Chinese company is now ramping up capacity to goose sales, while developing OLED screens in hopes of catching a wave of longer-term business., "Apple Supplier Is Worst China Performer After Screen Prices Drop," 18 June 2018

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


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


circa 1880, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for goose


Middle English gos, from Old English gōs; akin to Old High German gans goose, Latin anser, Greek chēn

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Statistics for goose

Last Updated

9 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for goose

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

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More Definitions for goose



English Language Learners Definition of goose

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: any one of many different kinds of birds that swim, that are larger than ducks, and that have a long neck and webbed feet

: a female goose

: the meat of a goose used as food



English Language Learners Definition of goose (Entry 2 of 2)

: to touch or pinch (someone) on the buttocks

: to increase the activity or amount of (something)


\ ˈgüs \
plural geese\ˈgēs \

Kids Definition of goose

1 : a waterbird with webbed feet that is related to the smaller duck and the larger swan

2 : a female goose

3 : the meat of a goose used as food

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Comments on goose

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


alleviating pain or harshness

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