Try Our Apps


Gobble up these 8 terms for eating


[lep-ruh-kawn, -kon] /ˈlɛp rəˌkɔn, -ˌkɒn/
noun, Irish Folklore.
a dwarf or sprite.
a conventionalized literary representation of this figure as a little old man who will reveal the location of a hidden crock of gold to anyone who catches him.
Origin of leprechaun
1595-1605; < Irish leipreachán, lucharachán, MIr luchrapán, lupra(c)cán, metathesized forms of Old Irish lúchorp(án), equivalent to lú- small + corp body (< Latin corpus) + -án diminutive suffix Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for leprechauns
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • But then how are we to account for the little red-dressed men and women and the leprechauns?

  • He would stand by the lake and call to the leprechauns to take him away.

    Shaun O'Day of Ireland Madeline Brandeis
  • An' so you don't b'lieve there's sich things as leprechauns, don't ye?

    The Fairy Mythology Thomas Keightley
  • But Snockerty was of the stripe of trolls, leprechauns, pucks, and hobgoblins.

    A Woman of Genius Mary Austin
  • “On the high road overlooking the Glen of the leprechauns, on a starlit night before the moon came up,” said Padna.

British Dictionary definitions for leprechauns


(in Irish folklore) a mischievous elf, often believed to have a treasure hoard
Word Origin
C17: from Irish Gaelic leipreachān, from Middle Irish lūchorpān, from small + corp body, from Latin corpus body
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for leprechauns



c.1600, from Irish lupracan, metathesis from Old Irish luchorpan literally "a very small body," from lu "little" (from PIE *legwh- "having little weight;" see light (adj.)) + corpan, diminutive of corp "body," from Latin corpus "body" (see corporeal). Commonly spelled lubrican in 17c. English. Leithbragan is Irish folk etymology, from leith "half" + brog "brogue," because the spirit was "supposed to be always employed in making or mending a single shoe."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
leprechauns in Culture

leprechauns definition

In the folklore of Ireland, little men who resemble elves. Supposedly, leprechauns can reveal — but only to someone clever enough to catch them — the location of buried treasure, typically a crock of gold hidden at the end of the rainbow.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Word Value for leprechauns

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for leprechauns