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

  • n. A thin, transparent fabric with a loose open weave, used for curtains and clothing.
  • n. A thin, loosely woven surgical dressing, usually made of cotton.
  • n. A thin plastic or metal woven mesh.
  • n. A mist or haze.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A thin fabric with a loose, open weave.
  • n. A similar bleached cotton fabric used as a surgical dressing.
  • n. A thin woven metal or plastic mesh.
  • n. Wire gauze, used as fence.
  • n. Mist or haze
  • v. To apply a dressing of gauze
  • v. To mist

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Having the qualities of gauze; thin; light.
  • n. A very thin, slight, transparent stuff, generally of silk; also, any fabric resembling silk gauze

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A very thin, slight, transparent stuff made of silk, silk and cotton, or silk and hemp or linen.
  • n. Any slight open material resembling this fabric: as, wire gauze.
  • Of or like gauze; gauzy.
  • n. In surgery, cheese-cloth, impregnated with antiseptic material (such as borie acid, corrosive sublimate, or iodoform), or simply sterilized, employed in dressing wounds.

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

  • n. a net of transparent fabric with a loose open weave
  • n. (medicine) bleached cotton cloth of plain weave used for bandages and dressings


French gaze, possibly from Spanish gasa (from Arabic qazz, raw silk, possibly from Persian kazh).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From French gaze, either from Arabic قَزّ (qazz, "silk"), from Persian کز (kaz, "silk"), from Middle Persian kaz ("silk"); or from غَزّة (ġazza, "Gaza"), a city associated with silk production. (Wiktionary)



Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • I'd say the flat ā for -au- (as in the conventional pronunciation of gauge) is pretty uncommon. I'm not sure whether standard pronunciation as in 'my chillisauce is fraught of beans' quite reaches 99% but it's high. Perhaps we can comfort the remainder with some gauze.

    October 16, 2010

  • Dear marsupial, there's a rule for that: for over 99% of verbs, active transitive goes with "avere" and passive and intransitive with "essere".

    October 16, 2010

  • It's time to choose, Italian speakers: essere or avere. You've had a thousand years to pick a serviceable auxiliary verb.

    October 16, 2010

  • It's time to choose, English speakers: take gauze and gauge and decide - either "gôz" and "gôjˈ" or "gāz" and "gājˈ".

    October 16, 2010

  • See, we've all had that Wordnik moment of "that word doesn't look right". From Phil Plait ("Bad Astronomer" on twitter): "Had to type the word "gauze" for a post going up tomorrow. The word looks wrong no matter how I spell it. Gauze. Gawz. Gouze. Snooki."

    October 16, 2010