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putter1

[puht-er] /ˈpʌt ər/
verb (used without object)
1.
to busy or occupy oneself in a leisurely, casual, or ineffective manner:
to putter in the garden.
2.
to move or go in a specified manner with ineffective action or little energy or purpose:
to putter about the house on a rainy day.
3.
to move or go slowly or aimlessly; loiter.
noun
4.
puttering or ineffective action; dawdling.
Verb phrases
5.
putter away, to spend or fill in a random, inconsequential, or unproductive way; fritter away; waste:
We puttered the morning away.
Also, especially British, potter.
Origin
1875-1880
1875-80; variant of potter2
Related forms
putterer, noun
putteringly, adverb

putter2

[puht-er] /ˈpʌt ər/
noun, Golf.
1.
a person who putts.
2.
a club with a relatively short, stiff shaft and a wooden or iron head, used in putting.
Origin
1735-45; putt + -er1

putter3

[poo t-er] /ˈpʊt ər/
noun
1.
a person or thing that puts.
2.
Track. a shot-putter.
Origin
1810-20; put + -er1
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for putter
  • Lacking an overarching mission, astronauts putter around in orbit doing make-work.
  • The weight-putter and high-jumper received him with his usual cordiality.
  • One rep told me he set up a putting green in a hospital and gave a putter to any doctor who made a hole-in-one.
  • Some writers pitch a tent on the green and stay for a week and brood about friction and energy and the gender of their putter.
  • As for me, the biggest off-putter was the easiness and eagerness of the protagonist to change side.
  • The motion of shot putter's body effects on the optimum angle of arm push.
  • The putter should be square with the ball on impact, otherwise it will spin and veer off your line.
  • People putter along doing pretty much the same thing year after year.
  • putter cover made of durable nylon with foam padding and fleece lining is embroidered with collegiate trademarks.
  • Still, he has been in the chase nearly half of the time and is capable any time his putter gets going.
British Dictionary definitions for putter

potter2

/ˈpɒtə/
verb
1.
(intransitive; often foll by about or around) to busy oneself in a desultory though agreeable manner
2.
(intransitive; often foll by along or about) to move with little energy or direction: to potter about town
3.
(transitive) usually foll by away. to waste (time): to potter the day away
noun
4.
the act of pottering
Derived Forms
potterer, especially (US & Canadian) putterer, noun
Word Origin
C16 (in the sense: to poke repeatedly): from Old English potian to thrust; see put

putter1

/ˈpʌtə/
noun (golf)
1.
a club for putting, usually having a solid metal head
2.
a golfer who putts

putter2

/ˈpʌtə/
verb
1.
(intransitive;often foll by about or around) to busy oneself in a desultory though agreeable manner
2.
(intransitive;often foll by along or about) to move with little energy or direction: to putter about town
3.
(transitive) usually foll by away. to waste (time)
noun
4.
the act of puttering
Equivalent term (in Britain and certain other countries) potter
Word Origin
C16 (in the sense: to poke repeatedly): from Old English potian to thrust; see put

putter3

/ˈpʊtə/
noun
1.
a person who puts: the putter of a question
2.
a person who puts the shot
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 putter
v.

"keep busy in a rather useless way," 1841, originally among farmers, alteration of potter (v.). Related: Puttered; puttering.

n.

late 14c., "beast that pushes with the head," agent noun from put (v.). As a type of golf club used in putting, from 1743; see putt (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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