\ ˈgau̇j How to pronounce gouge (audio) \

Definition of gouge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a chisel with a concavo-convex cross section
2a : the act of gouging
b : a groove or cavity scooped out
3 : an excessive or improper charge for something : extortion


gouged; gouging

Definition of gouge (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to scoop out with or as if with a gouge (see gouge entry 1 sense 1)
2a : to force out (an eye) with the thumb
b : to thrust the thumb into the eye of
3 : to make (someone) pay too much for something : overcharge

Other Words from gouge


gouger noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for gouge

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Verb

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Examples of gouge in a Sentence

Noun The accident left a big gouge in the side of the car. Verb The lamp fell and gouged the table. A bomb had gouged a large crater in the street. They feel that they are being gouged by the oil companies.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Critics say the companies — as well as their main competitor, GTL — are exploitative middlemen that price-gouge inmates and their families. Tana Ganeva, Rolling Stone, 8 Nov. 2021 The car’s antenna was hit, damaging the vehicle’s electrical system, and left a 7-foot long gouge in the pavement, FHP reported. Joe Mario Pedersen, orlandosentinel.com, 15 June 2021 The lightning strike damaged the compact SUV the 48-year-old was driving and left a 7-foot-long, 4-inch-wide gouge in the pavement, according to Florida Highway Patrol (FHP). Amanda Jackson, CNN, 14 June 2021 Out of Fisherman’s Wharf, the Lovely Martha departs at 6 a.m., with parking validation available to escape the tourist gouge at the nearby parking garage. Tom Stienstra, San Francisco Chronicle, 3 June 2021 In Washington, President Biden was urging gas-station owners not to price-gouge. Sue Halpern, The New Yorker, 19 May 2021 While Álvarez and García provide reasons to reach out beyond boxing’s bubble and cultivate new fans, the sport generally takes the very opposite approach, searching instead for the niche within its niche audience to price gouge. Dylan Hernández Columnist, Los Angeles Times, 7 May 2021 Soon there would be QR codes on parking gates that would allow the electricity-seeking driver to slip into a private garage and cop a charge sans price gouge. Paul Greenberg, Curbed, 30 Apr. 2021 This is just like the lumber store continuing to price gouge homeowners for batteries and plywood even after a hurricane heads out to sea and evaporates. Ed Hirs, Forbes, 20 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Politicians and consumer groups deride the idea as just the latest corporate feint to gouge the public. Jeffrey Ball, Fortune, 28 Sep. 2021 Another officer intervened and McClish tried to gouge that officer’s eye out and bit him in the right bicep and finger, an affidavit said. David Harris, orlandosentinel.com, 25 Sep. 2021 Again, not really, because the product shortages mean the big auto manufacturers aren’t having to compete against each other for every sale, and so can gouge top profit margin dollars out of every sale. Neil Winton, Forbes, 19 Sep. 2021 Metropolitan Police Officer Daniel Hodges described foaming at the mouth, bleeding and screaming as the rioters tried to gouge out his eye and crush him between two heavy doors. Arkansas Online, 6 Aug. 2021 The crew also fought off encroaching birds, which had begun trying to gouge out beak-fulls of the still-living marine mammal’s flesh. Alex Fox, Smithsonian Magazine, 3 Aug. 2021 Cabin crew members are being taught by federal air marshals how to punch, elbow and gouge potential assailants. Stephen Collinson With Shelby Rose, CNN, 28 July 2021 Designed by Swedish artist Jonas Dahlberg to be visible from Utoya, the plan was to gouge into the mountainside opposite the island. Mark Lewis, Star Tribune, 21 July 2021 Peafowl are the size of turkeys, with sharp beaks, massive talons and spurs that could gouge you. Jaclyn Cosgrove, Los Angeles Times, 18 June 2021

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1570, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for gouge

Noun and Verb

Middle English gowge, from Middle French gouge, from Late Latin gulbia

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Time Traveler for gouge

Time Traveler

The first known use of gouge was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near gouge



gouge carving

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Statistics for gouge

Last Updated

17 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Gouge.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/gouge. Accessed 9 Dec. 2021.

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More Definitions for gouge



English Language Learners Definition of gouge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a metal tool with a curved, sharp end that is used to cut and shape wood
: a deep cut or hole



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

: to cut a deep hole in (something)
: to make (a deep hole) in something
: to make (someone) pay too much money for something


\ ˈgau̇j How to pronounce gouge (audio) \

Kids Definition of gouge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a chisel with a curved blade for scooping or cutting holes
2 : a hole or groove made by cutting or scraping


gouged; gouging

Kids Definition of gouge (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make a hole or groove in something by cutting or scraping


\ ˈgau̇j How to pronounce gouge (audio) \

Medical Definition of gouge

: a chisel with a concavo-convex cross section for removing portions of bone in surgery

More from Merriam-Webster on gouge

Nglish: Translation of gouge for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of gouge for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about gouge


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