fox

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English[edit]

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A red fox (Vulpes vulpes).

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English fox, from Old English fox (fox), from Proto-Germanic *fuhsaz (fox), from Pre-Germanic *puḱsos (tailed one), from Proto-Indo-European *puḱ- (tail). Cognate with Scots fox (fox), West Frisian foks (fox), North Frisian Fering-Öömrang dialect foos, and Sölring and Heligoland dialects fos, Dutch vos (fox), Low German vos (fox), German Fuchs (fox), Icelandic fóa (fox), Tocharian B päkā (tail, chowrie), Russian пух (pux, down, fluff), Torwali [script needed] (pūš, fox), Hindi पूंछ (pū̃ch, tail).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

fox (plural foxes)

  1. A red fox, small carnivore (Vulpes vulpes), related to dogs and wolves, with red or silver fur and a bushy tail.
    • 15th Century, The Fox, verse 1
      The fox went out on a chase one night, / he prayed to the Moon to give him light, / for he had many a mile to go that night / before he reached the town-o, town-o, town-o. / He had many a mile to go that night / before he reached the town-o.
    • 1879, Richard Jefferies, chapter 1, The Amateur Poacher:
      They burned the old gun that used to stand in the dark corner up in the garret, close to the stuffed fox that always grinned so fiercely. Perhaps the reason why he seemed in such a ghastly rage was that he did not come by his death fairly. Otherwise his pelt would not have been so perfect.
  2. Any of numerous species of small wild canids resembling the red fox. In the taxonomy they form the tribe Vulpini within the family Canidae, consisting of nine genera (see the Wikipedia article on the fox).
  3. The fur of a fox.
  4. A fox terrier.
  5. The gemmeous dragonet, a fish, Callionymus lyra, so called from its yellow color.
  6. A cunning person.
  7. (slang) A physically attractive man or woman.
    • 1993, Laura Antoniou, The Marketplace (page 90)
      And Jerry was cute, you know, I liked him, but Frank was a total fox. And he was rougher than Jerry, you know, not so cultured.
    • 2012, Adele Parks, Still Thinking of You
      It wasn't just that Jayne was a fox – although, fuck, was she ever a fox. That arse, those tits, those lips. They could have a really good time together.
  8. (nautical) A small strand of rope made by twisting several rope-yarns together. Used for seizings, mats, sennits, and gaskets.
  9. (mechanics) A wedge driven into the split end of a bolt to tighten it.
  10. (obsolete) A sword; so called from the stamp of a fox on the blade, or perhaps of a wolf taken for a fox.

Synonyms[edit]

Hyponyms[edit]

Hypernyms[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Verb[edit]

fox (third-person singular simple present foxes, present participle foxing, simple past and past participle foxed)

  1. (transitive) To trick, fool or outwit (someone) by cunning or ingenuity.
  2. (transitive) To confuse or baffle (someone).
    This crossword puzzle has completely foxed me.
  3. (intransitive) To act slyly or craftily.
  4. (intransitive) To discolour paper. Fox marks are spots on paper caused by humidity.
    The pages of the book show distinct foxing.
  5. (transitive) To make sour, as beer, by causing it to ferment.
  6. (intransitive) To turn sour; said of beer, etc., when it sours in fermenting.
  7. (transitive) To intoxicate; to stupefy with drink.
    • Samuel Pepys
      I drank [] so much wine that I was almost foxed.
  8. (transitive) To repair (boots) with new front upper leather, or to piece the upper fronts of.

Derived terms[edit]

Translations[edit]


Old English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Proto-Germanic *fuhsaz, from Proto-Indo-European *puk-, *peuk- (bushy hair). Cognate with Old Saxon vuhs, Dutch vos, Old High German fuhs (Yiddish פֿוקס (fuks), German Fuchs). The Indo-European root was also the source of Avestan pusa- (‘plait’), Proto-Slavic *puxъ (Russian пух (pux, fuzz)), Proto-Baltic *pausti- (Lithuanian paustìs (fur)).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

fox m

  1. fox

Old French[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Adjective[edit]

fox

  1. nominative masculine singular of fol
  2. oblique masculine plural of fol