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girl

[gurl] /gɜrl/
noun
1.
a female child, from birth to full growth.
2.
a young, immature woman, especially formerly, an unmarried one.
3.
a daughter:
My wife and I have two girls.
4.
Informal: Sometimes Offensive. a grown woman, especially when referred to familiarly:
She's having the girls over for bridge next week.
5.
a girlfriend; sweetheart.
6.
Older Use: Usually Offensive. a female servant, as a maid.
7.
Older Use: Usually Offensive. a female employee, especially an office assistant.
8.
a female who is from or native to a given place:
She's a Missouri girl.
9.
girls, (used with a singular or plural verb)
  1. a range of sizes from 7 to 14, for garments made for girls.
  2. a garment in this size range.
  3. the department or section of a store where these garments are sold.
10.
girls, Slang. one's breasts (usually preceded by the, my, etc., and primarily used self-referentially by women).
Origin
1250-1300
1250-1300; Middle English gurle, girle, gerle child, young person; compare Old English gyrela, gi(e)rela, item of dress, apparel (presumably worn by the young in late OE period, and hence used as a metonym)
Usage note
Some adult women are offended if referred to as a girl, or informally, a gal. However, a group of adult female friends often refer to themselves as the girls, and their “girls night out” implies the company of adult females. Also, a woman may express camaraderie by addressing another woman as girl, as in You go, girl! or Attagirl!
Referring to one's female office assistant or housekeeper as the girl or my girl, once in common use, is now considered unacceptable. Working girl, meaning “a woman who works,” girl/gal Friday, meaning “a female office assistant,” and other occupational terms such as career girl and college girl, are also dated and often perceived as insulting. Working girl as a slang term meaning “a prostitute” is sometimes used by female prostitutes as a euphemistic self-reference. See also lady, woman.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples for girls
  • Drivein dream girls a galaxy of bmovie starlets of the sixties.
  • Worldwide, basketball tournaments are held for boys and girls of all age levels.
  • Both girls continued to answer to their childhood nicknames well into adulthood.
  • Chan continues to be used as a term of endearment, especially for girls, into adulthood.
  • The girls also wear the seven inch platforms they wore in the challenge earlier.
  • It is revealed later at panel that the chosen girls are alex and catherine.
  • The town has produced a number of allamericans, girls and boys.
  • The mines and collieries act also outlawed the employment of women and girls in mines.
  • Untouchable boys and girls are discriminated even at public schools.
  • She offers advice and words of wisdom to the girls when they need it.
British Dictionary definitions for girls

girl

/ɡɜːl/
noun
1.
a female child from birth to young womanhood
2.
a young unmarried woman; lass; maid
3.
(informal) a sweetheart or girlfriend
4.
(informal) a woman of any age
5.
an informal word for daughter
6.
a female employee, esp a female servant
7.
(South African, derogatory) a Black female servant of any age
8.
(usually pl) (informal) the girls, a group of women, esp acquaintances
Usage note
The use of girl as in meaning 4, to refer to a woman of any age, is highly likely to be considered old-fashioned or to cause offence
Word Origin
C13: of uncertain origin; perhaps related to Low German Göre boy, girl
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for girls
girl
late 13c., gyrle "child" (of either sex), of unknown origin; current scholarship leans toward an unrecorded O.E. *gyrele, from P.Gmc. *gurwilon-, dim. of *gurwjoz (represented by Low Ger. gære "boy, girl"), from PIE *ghwrgh-, also found in Gk. parthenos "virgin." But this is highly conjectural. Another candidate is O.E. gierela "garment." Like boy, lass, lad it is of obscure origin. "Probably most of them arose as jocular transferred uses of words that had originally different meaning" [OED]. Specific meaning of "female child" is 14c. Applied to "any young unmarried woman" since 1520s. Meaning "sweetheart" is from 1648. Girl next door as a type of unflashy attractiveness is first recorded 1961.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for girls

girl

noun
  1. A male homosexual (1970s+ Homosexuals)
  2. Cocaine: They call cocaine girl because it gives 'em a sexual job when they take a shot (1950s+ Narcotics)
Related Terms

bachelor girl, bar-girl, best girl, b-girl, call girl, charity girl, gal friday, go-go girl, idiot girl, playgirl, sweater girl, tomboy, v-girl, working girl


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Word of The Day

Difficulty index for girl

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Word Value for girls

6
8
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