American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. An electrician in charge of lighting on a movie or television set.
- n. Chiefly British An old man or a rustic.
- n. Chiefly British A boss or foreman.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. One who gaffs fish: an angler's assistant who with a gaff secures the fish caught. Also gaffsman.
- n. An old man: originally a rustic term of respect, used as a title; later applied familiarly to any old man of rustic condition.
- n. In Great Britain, the foreman of a squad of workmen, especially of navvies; an overseer.
- n. A workman in a glass-factory; a finisher.
- n. film A chief lighting technician for a motion-picture or television production.
- n. A glassblower.
- n. colloquial An old man.
- n. UK A foreman.
- n. An "Old Gaffer" is a sailor.
- n. In Maritime regions "the Little Gaffer" is the baby in the house. (the boss!)
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. An old fellow; an aged rustic.
- n. Prov. Eng. A foreman or overseer of a gang of laborers.
- n. an electrician responsible for lighting on a movie or tv set
- n. an elderly man
- n. a person who exercises control over workers
- Likely a contraction of godfather, but with the vowels influenced by grandfather. Compare French compère, German gevatter. (Wiktionary)
- Probably alteration (influenced by grandfather) of godfather. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“I've never heard (or at least never noticed) the word gaffer before and I think I'm probably more familiar with British forms than most Americans (not saying much).”
“If you've ever watched the credits of a movie you've seen the word "gaffer"---he's the head electrictian on the set.”
“The gaffer was a centrehalf and he wasn't bad was he That was a big thing for me hopefully he can make me into a better player.”
“The gaffer was a centre-half and he wasn't bad, was he?”
“Mr. Chihuly called Mr. Rubino a "gaffer," a term for a glassblower who labors around a furnace at the instruction of an artist.”
“If you're the kind of movie-goer who stays reading end credits until you're playing footsie with the usher, you have probably wondered: "What does a 'gaffer' do?" or, "Who's the 'best boy'?”
“I don't think "gaffer" fits the "respectful form of address to a professional".”
“That same night Robert went to call on the "gaffer," Black Jock, and as he neared the door he met Mysie Maitland.”
“scorchio" at 1300, and our gaffer is a powerful right-handed all-rounder from Preston who can turn a game with bat or ball.”
“The great case itself had nothing to do with sport, and, indeed, from a narrative point of view, was somewhat uninteresting, but the man who alone held the one piece of information wanted was a keeper, backer, or "gaffer" of professional pedestrians, and it was through the medium of his pecuniary interest in such matters that Hewitt was enabled to strike a bargain with him.”
These user-created lists contain the word ‘gaffer’.
A list of very silly sounding words, as well as words that are fun to say
A list of words that are odd or words that I have looked up.
Words only (I left out the expressions) from Geza Kerenyi's EN-HU interpreters' dictionary. Most of them pose some difficulty when interpreted between HU and EN in either or both directions.
A fanfare for the Common Man. Words for rustics, yokels, and woolhats of all sorts.
Well-known phrases in Irish English that aren't understood in American English.
an immense, grandiloquent list that loads like a thousand years sentence in stone. new words are in the other lists.
... as in "by James Joyce"
Words I've come across while reading and looked up in the dictionary.
Words I wrote down while reading this book
Linguistic exuberance from the childrens' books of William Steig
Looking for tweets for gaffer.