from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. One who hunts game for food, ignoring the rules of sport.
  • n. One who participates in contests simply to win prizes.
  • n. A person who seeks artifacts from past civilizations for personal use, sometimes by illegal means, without adhering to professional standards of archaeology.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A person who hunts animals for food (for the pot) rather than as sport.
  • n. A person who competes solely to win prizes.
  • n. An amateur archaeologist, especially one who seeks artifacts to sell without regard to their cultural importance.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. someone who participates in contests in order to collect trophies
  • n. a nonprofessional archeologist
  • n. someone who hunts for food (not for sport)


pot +‎ hunter – in hunting sense, “for the (cooking) pot (to eat)”; in the archeology sense, “seeking old pots (to sell)”. (Wiktionary)


  • He had already assaulted a convicted pothunter in Blanding, Utah, and had shot a round.

    Riding for the Brand

  • "I used to be a pothunter," he told me one spring.


  • All were on public land, out in the sagebrush country, sites that only a trained archeologist or an experienced pothunter could have detected in the first place.


  • Suddenly I recalled packrats running through the legs of the pothunter who wore a gun, and a packrat entranced by the sound of a flute I had put to my lips.


  • This time the pothunter with the bandanna over his nose and mouth paused and listened, and his hand went to the revolver on his hip.


  • Had my dad been a pothunter, I would have been one too, happily booting a shovel into the ground right next to him.

    NPR Topics: News

  • For a chronic pothunter of which there are so many in the West, the lure of the loot is so strong that they can't give it up. "

    Riding for the Brand

  • She could’ve given us away if the pothunter hadn’t been making so much noise dragging out the packrat rubbish.


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