Definition of golf in English:

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Pronunciation: /ɡälf/
Pronunciation: /ɡôlf/


1A game played on a large open-air course, in which a small hard ball is struck with a club into a series of small holes in the ground, the object being to use the fewest possible strokes to complete the course.

A golf course usually has 18 holes, each set in a smooth lawn (a green) separated from the others by stretches of smooth grass (fairways), rough ground, sand-filled bunkers, and other hazards. Various clubs are used to hit the ball from a tee toward the green and then putt it into the hole.

Example sentences
  • A man was playing a game of golf, and on hole 16, he hit the ball right into a field of buttercups.
  • Another choice is a game of golf at either of the two nearby 18-hole courses.
  • You'll be able to watch live premiership games, basketball, golf, cricket, and all sorts.
2A code word representing the letter G, used in radio communication.


[no object]
Play golf: (as noun golfing) a week’s golfing
More example sentences
  • The idea behind pasture golf is golfing without all the pomp and circumstance.
  • The aim of the championship golf tournament is to promote youth golfing in the region.
  • He's pretty healthy, golfing almost every day, hanging out with his friends at night.


Late Middle English (originally Scots): perhaps related to Dutch kolf 'club, bat', used as a term in several Dutch games; golf, however, is recorded before these games.

  • The first recorded mention of golf is in 1457, in a Scottish edict that banned certain games (including football) because King James II thought they distracted people from archery practice. It seems to have been a Scottish game originally, although the word may be related to Dutch kolf ‘a club or bat’. It is now popular around the world, but according to the American writer Mark Twain, golf is ‘A good walk spoiled’. See also bird

Words that rhyme with golf

Rolf, Wolf

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: golf

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