- 1(Especially in the western US) a man who herds and tends cattle, performing much of his work on horseback: they are always playing cowboys and IndiansMore example sentences
- Near the heart of town, I spied a group of cowboys herding some cattle into a fenced-off pasture.
- On working ranches in Colorado, guests can help with the cattle alongside the cowboys and cowgirls at work.
- How odd it seemed to have once played cowboys and Indians on the same rocks, then warm and white in the afternoon sun.
- 2British • informal A dishonest or careless person in business, especially an unqualified one: [as modifier]: cowboy coach firms are alleged to have flouted safety rulesMore example sentences
- I wanted to make certain that we were going about it correctly, and not employing cowboys on our business.
- ‘It is not the case of a cowboy firm failing to contact the Environment Agency in order to cut costs,’ he said.
- He also accused some motorists of behaving like ignoramuses and cowboys who put business in jeopardy.
verb[no object] North American • informal Back to top
- Work as a cowboy.More example sentences
- Having shared the dangers of their trek on my first season cowboying, they assumed I would return.
- After years of cowboying, he had been ready to settle into something that would keep him still the rest of his days.
- During the ‘30s he cowboyed Sonora County's rough country of rimrocks, canyons and sotols for $30 a month.
- US • informal Make a determined effort to overcome an obstacle or deal with a difficult situation: if the recount votes aren’t to his liking, he still needs to cowboy up and let the voters' will be heardMore example sentences
- But a man, she thought, was supposed to endure pain, cowboy up, and not bitch about it all day long.
- Both sides need to cowboy up.
- This would be an open attempt to get them to thinking that they need to cowboy up and put me in my place.