Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
See also: Digger
Derived from dig.
- (Australian soldier): Attributed to the considerable time that soldiers spent digging trenches during World War I.
digger (plural diggers)
- A large piece of machinery that digs holes or trenches; an excavator.
- A tool for digging.
2009, Sharon Bomgaars, The Best Clubhouse Ever, page 143:
- The post hole digger did look ancient. I was pretty certain myself that it hadn′t dug any holes for a long, long time.
- A spade (playing card).
- One who digs.
1997, Barbara J. Wrede, Civilizing Your Puppy, page 75:
- You′ve tried the supposedly sure method of squirting the digger with water from a hose, and that hasn′t worked. […] This step will discourage 99 percent of the diggers.
- 2005, Gary R. Sampson, Dick Wolfsie, Dog Dilemmas: Simple Solutions to Everyday Problems, page 130,
- Most retrievers are not inveterate diggers — that′s a trait usually reserved for other breeds like wire-haired terriers and schnauzers.
- (Australia, obsolete) A gold miner, one who digs for gold.
1853, Charles Dickens (editor), Household Words, volume 21, page 64:
- A successful Australian digger — successful, not merely in siftings and washings, but bearing the title, and its best credentials, of a “nuggetter” − came down from Forest Creek recently and took up his abode in a low lodging-house in Little Bourke Street, Melbourne.
- (Australia, dated) An informal nickname for a friend; used as a term of endearment.
- (Australia, informal) An Australian soldier.
1998, Helen Gilbert, Sightlines: Race, Gender, and Nation in Contemporary Australian Theatre, page 191:
- Costume played a key part in his differentiation from British soldiers as the Digger uniform came to embody Australian versions of masculinity and mateship.
- 2002, Jeff Doyle, Jeffrey Grey, Peter Pierce, Australia's Vietnam War, page xxiii,
- For many, the congruencies of the Anzac legend and the diggers who served in Vietnam were slight, too slight, and the legend seemed unable to accommodate them.
- 2004, Lisanne Gibson, Joanna Besley, Monumental Queensland: Signposts on a Cultural Landscape, page 99,
- Like many other Queensland communities, the workers from the North Ipswich Railway Workshops chose a statue of a soldier, or digger, to honour their fellow workers.
large piece of machinery
spade (playing card) — see spade
one who digs
gold miner — see gold digger
nickname for a friend — see bugger