Definition of goof in English:

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Pronunciation: /ɡuːf/
informal, chiefly North American


1A mistake: one of the most embarrassing goofs of his tenure
More example sentences
  • We can see them all too clearly in other people: workout mistakes, diet goofs, social gaffes.
  • One can only presume, therefore, that all the tactical blunders and propaganda goofs which have characterised events so far were all part of this cunning plan to begin with.
  • He is disarmingly straightforward about his goofs and gaffes, of which he had plenty during his first go-round.
2A foolish or stupid person.
Example sentences
  • Ten thousand reckless little goofs get injured in our country's playground parks each year according to the Ontario-based Canadian Standards Association.
  • People too often get a job and transform from humans into robots, acting like oppressive goofs, under the comfy rationalization that they have to perform such tasks because they need the money.
  • During my class play, my friends and I were dancing like goofs backstage.


[no object]
1Behave in a silly way or playful way: they started goofing around in front of the cameras
More example sentences
  • We see them rehearsing, talking, goofing around, obsessing over coffee.
  • On Saturday morning they were gathered around the TV, half watching it, half goofing around.
  • Meanwhile, at the far end of the pitch, Roberto Carlos is goofing around, practising scissor-kicks for a Brazilian television crew.
1.1 (goof off) Be lazy; avoid one’s work or duties: too many students are goofing off
More example sentences
  • When I first put on Hootenanny, for instance, last week, the first track I heard was the title track - pretty shambolic, with all the band swapping instruments and goofing off.
  • In Beantown, city officials want to install GPS tracking devices to make sure unionized drivers aren't goofing off or endangering schoolchildren.
  • Both he and Garlin are good for laughs when they're goofing off to entertain the children with sing-alongs or synchronized face-making exercises, but this is the problem.
1.2 (goof on) Make fun of; ridicule: Lew and I started goofing on Alison’s friend
More example sentences
  • Here the real Chris Isaak and Silvertones are playing out there like pros - not a faux tribute band - and Chris is goofing on the band like he does on TV.
  • It was one thing for intimates to make light of Shawn's squeamish quirks, but he was an outsider goofing on a dignified old man whose job he was about to take.
  • When your own network starts goofing on you, watch out.
2Make a mistake: someone at the bank had goofed
More example sentences
  • Usually, in a crossword, if I goof up, I can erase the word, or just complete a different part of the puzzle.
  • Still I know there will be times when I goof up - when things would not be the way I want them to be.
  • You knew that Barney was going to goof up sometime during the show.


Early 20th century: of unknown origin; compare with goop1.

Words that rhyme with goof

aloof, behoof, hoof, pouffe, proof, roof, shadoof, spoof, Tartuffe, underproof, woof
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