\ ˈgət How to pronounce gut (audio) \

Definition of gut

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1a : bowels, entrails usually used in plural fish guts
b : digestive tract also : part of the digestive tract and especially the intestine or stomach
c : belly, abdomen
d : catgut
2 guts plural : the inner essential parts the guts of a car
3 guts plural : fortitude and stamina in coping with what alarms, repels, or discourages : courage, pluck had the guts to run for public office
4 : the basic visceral, emotional, or instinctual part of a person She knew in her gut that he was lying. Consult more than one financial adviser before making a final choice, and trust your gut.— Quentin Fottrell My gut says this is, overall, a terrible idea.— Erica Buist often used before another noun making a gut decisiona gut feeling"Tony's a very driven guy, and he makes a lot of decisions based on gut instinct," …— Tom Nides
5 : a narrow passage also : a narrow waterway or small creek
6 : the sac of silk taken from a silkworm ready to spin its cocoon and drawn out into a thread for use as a snell



Definition of gut (Entry 2 of 4)

1 : arising from one's inmost self : visceral a gut reaction
2 : having strong impact or immediate relevance gut issues


gutted; gutting

Definition of gut (Entry 3 of 4)

transitive verb

1a : eviscerate
b : to extract all the essential passages or portions from
2a : to destroy the inside of fire gutted the building
b : to destroy the essential power or effectiveness of inflation gutting the economy
gut it out

Definition of GUT (Entry 4 of 4)

grand unified theory; grand unification theory

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Examples of gut in a Sentence

Noun the guts of the fish the guts of a machine the guts of a business deal That decision took a lot of guts. I didn't have the guts to do it. Verb The salmon is already gutted and filleted. Critics claim that these reforms will gut the law.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The Red Sox were swept by the Yankees for the second straight time in their most recent series, the last two games proving to a gut-wrenching blow., 4 Oct. 2021 The Lions, coming off Sunday's gut-wrenching 19-17 home loss to the Baltimore Ravens, travel to Chicago to face the NFC North rival Bears (1 p.m., Fox) next Sunday. Marlowe Alter, Detroit Free Press, 27 Sep. 2021 Days ago, gut-wrenching images of U.S. Border Patrol on horseback with whips in hand, chasing after Haitian migrants hit the internet and caused rightful outrage. Janice Gassam Asare, Forbes, 23 Sep. 2021 His words reflected the feelings of a Russell community left reeling after another gut-wrenching shooting, which killed Tyree and injured two other teens at the West End bus stop. Lucas Aulbach, The Courier-Journal, 23 Sep. 2021 The Chiefs have to settle for 1-1 with the comeback win over the Browns and that gut-wrenching loss to the Ravens. Los Angeles Times, 20 Sep. 2021 For cryptocurrency backers, it's been a gut-wrenching year, as bitcoin, ether and other digital coins skyrocketed to record highs only to suddenly plunge in the spring. Julia Horowitz, CNN, 15 Sep. 2021 This Saturday, the 20th anniversary of one of America’s most gut-wrenching days since Pearl Harbor, solemn commemorations will unfold across the nation. Jerry Carino, USA TODAY, 9 Sep. 2021 Idaho could enact crisis care standards in days, leaving him to make gut-wrenching decisions about who gets life-saving treatment. Rebecca Boone, Anchorage Daily News, 4 Sep. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective In one of the studies, Nagler and coworkers collected gut bacteria from the feces of healthy and milk-allergic babies and put those collections of microbes into the digestive tracts of germ-free mice. Esther Landhuis, Scientific American, 23 May 2020 Some of this was simply a gut public-health reaction to the sudden spread of the virus. Ned Temko, The Christian Science Monitor, 15 Apr. 2020 But as their descriptions continue into more specific and graphic territory, that veneer quickly dissolves into unmistakable, gut-wrenching exploitation. Andrew Unterberger, Billboard, 4 Mar. 2019 The researchers hope to better understand how gut bacteria protect their insect hosts. Popular Science, 5 Feb. 2020 Still, Hollywood fancies itself as a town that operates on gut instinct rather than algorithms, for better or for worse. Tatiana Siegel, The Hollywood Reporter, 8 Jan. 2020 Priorities can then be set on a sounder basis than gut instinct, sentimental appeal or the political clout of the people hurt or helped. The Economist, 16 Nov. 2019 That Hood was the latest Moda Center target, however, was especially gut-wrenching. oregonlive, 7 Dec. 2019 South Alabama lost in one of the most gut-wrenching ways imaginable last Saturday, a missed 28-yard field goal that would have given the Jaguars the lead with 1:08 to play. Creg Stephenson |, al, 12 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The Yankees are feeling it now, after nearly six months of triumph and torment, great moments and gut punches. New York Times, 27 Sep. 2021 The emergency measure was rushed into law in the early Trump era when the president tried to gut the Affordable Care Act’s guarantee of free birth control., 27 Aug. 2021 Beane’s solution is to build a lineup using sabermetrics, appraising players according to their stats rather than gut instinct. Jess Bergman, The New Republic, 11 Aug. 2021 The overall effect has been to gut the initial view in European capitals that President Joe Biden would quickly repair the transatlantic bonds that President Donald Trump had so denigrated. Ned Temko, The Christian Science Monitor, 22 Sep. 2021 Medical factors might include hormonal changes that occur during perimenopause, menopause and post-partum, as well as stress, illness, weight loss, and even gut health. Kristin Auble, Vogue, 22 Sep. 2021 The response was to gut the ethics provision that made it through the House? Alex Shephard, The New Republic, 17 Sep. 2021 This may be part of what’s behind the government’s determination to gut Ant Financial. Anne Stevenson-yang, Forbes, 13 Sep. 2021 An onslaught of pathogens ravaging the airway or gut certainly counts. Katherine J. Wu, The Atlantic, 9 Sep. 2021

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


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


1964, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for gut

Noun, Adjective, and Verb

Middle English, from Old English guttas, plural; probably akin to Old English gēotan to pour

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Time Traveler for gut

Time Traveler

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

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Last Updated

8 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Gut.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for gut



English Language Learners Definition of gut

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: the internal organs of an animal
: the inside parts of something
: the most important parts of something



English Language Learners Definition of gut (Entry 2 of 3)

: relating to or based on emotions : not based on logic or reason
: affecting people's emotions



English Language Learners Definition of gut (Entry 3 of 3)

: to remove the internal organs from (a fish or an animal)
: to destroy the inside of (a structure)
: to destroy the power of (something) : to make (something) no longer effective


\ ˈgət How to pronounce gut (audio) \

Kids Definition of gut

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the inner parts of an animal a frog's guts
2 : a person's stomach : belly He flattened his back against the wall and pulled in his gut.— Lynne Rae Perkins, Nuts to You
3 : the digestive tract or a part of it (as the intestine)
4 : the inner parts the guts of the machine
5 : catgut
6 guts plural : courage


gutted; gutting

Kids Definition of gut (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to remove the inner organs from gut a fish
2 : to destroy the inside of Fire gutted the building.


\ ˈgət How to pronounce gut (audio) \

Medical Definition of gut

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : digestive tract also : part of the digestive tract and especially the intestine or stomach the mix of bacteria making up the flora of the gut — W. E. Leary
b : abdomen sense 1a, belly usually used in plural not often in formal use his huge gut hung far below his belt— L. M. Uris
2 : catgut


transitive verb
gutted; gutting

Medical Definition of gut (Entry 2 of 2)

: to take out the bowels of : eviscerate

More from Merriam-Webster on gut

Nglish: Translation of gut for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of gut for Arabic Speakers


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