From Middle Englishcat, catte, from Old Englishcatt(“male cat”), catte(“female cat”), from Proto-Germanic*kattuz.
An animal of the family Felidae:
A domesticated subspecies (Felis silvestris catus) of feline animal, commonly kept as a house pet. [from 8thc.]
At twilight in the summer there is never anybody to fear—man, woman, or cat—in the chambers and at that hour the mice come out. They do not eat parchment or foolscap or red tape, but they eat the luncheon crumbs.
Synonyms:puss, pussy, malkin, kitty, pussy-cat, grimalkin; see also Thesaurus:cat
Any similar animal of the family Felidae, which includes lions, tigers, bobcats, etc.
1985 January, George Laycock, "Our American Lion", in Boy Scouts of America, Boys' Life, 28.
If you should someday round a corner on the hiking trail and come face to face with a mountain lion, you would probably never forget the mighty cat.
(offensive) A spiteful or angry woman. [from early 13thc.]
1835 September, anonymous, "The Pigs", in The New-England Magazine, Vol. 9, 156.
But, ere one rapid moon its tale has told, / He finds his prize — a cat — a slut — a scold.
An enthusiast or player of jazz.
(slang) A person (usually male).
1973 December, "Books Noted", discussing A Dialogue (by James Baldwin and Nikki Giovanni), in Black World, Johnson Publishing Company, 77.
BALDWIN: That's what we were talking about before. And by the way, you did not have to tell me that you think your father is a groovy cat; I knew that.
Synonyms:bloke, chap, cove, dude, fellow, fella, guy
(slang) A prostitute. [from at least early 15thc.]
(nautical) A strong tackle used to hoist an anchor to the cathead of a ship.
(chiefly nautical)Short form of cat-o'-nine-tails.
(archaic) A sturdy merchant sailing vessel (now only in "catboat").
(archaic, uncountable) The game of "trap and ball" (also called "cat and dog").
The trap of the game of "trap and ball".
(archaic) The pointed piece of wood that is struck in the game of tipcat.
(slang, vulgar, African American Vernacular English) A vagina, a vulva; the female external genitalia.
A double tripod (for holding a plate, etc.) with six feet, of which three rest on the ground, in whatever position it is placed.
(historical) A wheeled shelter, used in the Middle Ages as a siege weapon to allow assailants to approach enemy defences.
Synonyms:tortoise, Welsh cat
See also Thesaurus:cat, Thesaurus:man.
(any member of the suborder (sometimes superfamily) Feliformia or Feloidea):feliform ("cat-like" carnivoran), feloid (compare Caniformia, Canoidea)
(any member of the subfamily Felinae, genera Puma, Acinonyx, Lynx, Leopardus, and Felis)):feline cat, a feline
(any member of the subfamily Pantherinae, genera Panthera, Uncia and Neofelis):pantherine cat, a pantherine
(technically, all members of the genus Panthera):panther (i.e. tiger, lion, jaguar, leopard), (narrow sense) panther (i.e. black panther)
(any member of the extinct subfamily Machairodontinae, genera Smilodon, Homotherium, Miomachairodus, etc.):Smilodontini, Machairodontini (Homotherini), Metailurini, "saber-toothed cat" (saber-tooth)
Ils d'visirent pour enne haeure, mais la Louise était pas chagrinaïe au tour sa pâte, pasqué a savait que le cat était à gardaïr la pâte caoude. (They talked for an hour, but Louise was not worried about her dough, because she knew that the cat was keeping the dough warm.)