\ ˈgȯi How to pronounce goy (audio) \
plural goyim\ ˈgȯi-​əm How to pronounce goy (audio) \ also goys

Definition of goy

sometimes disparaging
: a non-Jewish person : gentile sense 1 "You were my uncle," Duddy shouted, "and I thought it was the right thing to tell you the goy was stealing from you."— Mordecai Richler In the Yiddish-speaking world of the Lower East Side, with its all-Jewish streets and all-Jewish schools, it was possible to regard the goyim as unmarriageable aliens.— Jonathan Raban Our rabbi … used to tell us not to let the goyim, those people outside the invisible wall, know if we had any differences among ourselves.— Nat Hentoff … what we Jews call Torah and goys call the Old Testament …— Robert Little

Other Words from goy

goyish \ ˈgȯi-​ish How to pronounce goy (audio) \ adjective, sometimes disparaging
Jewish or goyish was the grand bifurcation of the universe. If, on rare occasion, my parent uttered a sentence that did not contain the word "Jewish," odds were it contained "goyish" instead. — Aaron Lansky "What kind of a name is Rosemary?" asked one of the girls … "It is a goyish name … Do you mean to say your best friend is not a Jew?" — Jane Yolen
goyishness noun, sometimes disparaging
Renee is a lapsed Orthodox Jew trying to embrace the life of the mind amid the "genteel goyishness" of Princeton. — Frances Taliaferro

First Known Use of goy

1841, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for goy

Yiddish, from Hebrew gōy people, nation

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Cite this Entry

“Goy.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/goy. Accessed 24 Jul. 2021.

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