Definition of coureur de bois in English:

coureur de bois

Syllabification: cou·reur de bois
Pronunciation: /kəˌrər də ˈbwä

noun (plural coureurs de bois pronunc. same)

(In Canada and the northern US) a woodsman or trader of French origin.
More example sentences
  • In addition to the habitants, there were the coureurs de bois, traders who negotiated for furs with the Indians in the upper reaches of the Ottawa River and in the Great Lakes.
  • The exploits of the early travellers by canoe, especially the French coureurs de bois, stand among the great adventure stories of all time.
  • A veteran of many government-endorsed programs, I've also worked for a federal agency and highly enjoy those National Film Board shorts about Québecois coureurs de bois.


early 18th century: French, literally 'wood runner'.

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