Definition of gorge in English:


See synonyms for gorge

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  • 1A narrow valley between hills or mountains, typically with steep rocky walls and a stream running through it.

    ‘Their great pale grey slopes are breached all along the coast by a number of steep, rocky gorges with towering vertical walls.’
    • ‘The hour-long flight takes in both sections of the Gregory National Park and passes over luxuriant river valleys, yawning gorges, rocky ravines and a chain of magnificent flattop sandstone mesas.’
    • ‘The obstacles created by the highlands, valleys, and gorges found in the mountain regions fostered strong cultural and linguistic differences.’
    • ‘This is rugged country, broken, steep hills, narrow valleys plunging to streams flowing through deep gorges, all covered in bush and mud.’
    • ‘Now in the little space that is left, in steep valleys and gorges, the Kurinji bushes are battling for survival, like many other life forms of the area.’
    • ‘The road will bring trade, and better access to health care and the outside world, to the villages strung along the banks of the Panjsher River as it courses through steep gorges and ravines from the Hindu Kush mountains.’
    • ‘This train spirals up a steep mountain gorge, climbing 2,800 ft in 40 minutes.’
    • ‘During the following days, we will cross green frozen steppes, sandy deserts, narrow gorges and canyons, and all the guises that mountains are apt to take.’
    • ‘Rivers such as the Dudh Kosi and Bhote Kosi have carved deep gorges into the mountains, leaving a complex terrain of steep ridges and narrow valleys.’
    • ‘Trails probe the cool inner sanctums of 18 sandstone-walled canyons, where you'll find steep gorges and waterfalls plunging from cliffs.’
    • ‘Over geological time these small streams will inevitably eat away the whole mountain side and the gorges will probably collapse in on themselves, but don't hold your breath waiting for it.’
    • ‘The same can happen an hour or so outside Sydney, in the Blue Mountains, where trekkers into the valleys and gorges often don't come back.’
    • ‘The towering cliffs originate on the ocean's floor and ascend from the water to create amazing gorges created by waterfalls streaming down over centuries and eroding the stone.’
    • ‘They walked through the shadow of the gorge, the steep overhanging walls closed in on them, and there was a sense of impending evil about them.’
    • ‘If the track that approaches it from the east was anything to go by, it occupied a near invincible state of isolation, protected by gorges, mountains and precipitous passes.’
    • ‘It was our first sight of wide open space, with nothing but mountains and huge gorges on the horizon.’
    • ‘Once on the ground, it's the constant sound of water that strikes you: streams whisper and waterfalls roar, a soft rush echoes from mountain gorges, and forest leaves drip with life.’
    • ‘After a night there, we headed on up into the hills, winding our way up the narrow gorge of the river valley.’
    • ‘Climbing down deep-throated gorges and up awe-inspiring mountains had David Denison marvelling at early road pioneers’
    • ‘They chased him down the mountain and into the gorge where he disappeared and the miners couldn't follow.’
    ravine, canyon, gully, pass, defile, couloir, deep narrow valley
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  • 2 archaic The throat.

    ‘Sinking his teeth into her gorge, he grotesquely tore her throat out.’
    • ‘Still both not feeling 100%, Takuto coughing and with a hurting left knee and I with a sore gorge, we left Parral on a blue sky morning.’
    1. 2.1The contents of the stomach.
      ‘This makes me sick, rancid gorge fills my throat, but I swallow it down.’
      • ‘And all the way, most like a brutish beast, he spewed up his gorge, that all did him detest.’
      • ‘His throat fighting the gorge rising in his gullet, he slid off the bed and collapsed on the deck.’
  • 3The neck of a bastion or other outwork; the rear entrance to a fortification.

    ‘Leaders of combat teams should know where to set up an ambush - on the roads and paths along cornices and gorges, on slopes forming entrances to gorges, in populated centers and so on.’
    • ‘He then saw a group of soldiers pinned down at the entrance of the gorge.’
    • ‘First, waves of US planes dropped more than 40 bombs on their positions, concentrated in the gorge that provides entrance to the city.’
    • ‘From the Moulin de Cambelong a twisty road rises to the perfectly preserved medieval village of Conques, huddled on the edge of a gorge round the towering Romanesque cathedral church of Sainte-Foy.’
  • 4A mass of ice obstructing a narrow passage, especially a river.

    ‘It is of record that fifty years ago an ice gorge formed near here.’
    • ‘Like a gorge of ice in a river, once the first obstructing block breaks loose, the whole mass begins to move and the blockade is gone.’



/ɡôrj/ /ɡɔrdʒ/

intransitive verb

[no object]
  • Eat a large amount greedily; fill oneself with food.

    ‘the river comes alive during March when fish gorge on caddisworms’
    • ‘we used to go to all the little restaurants there and gorge ourselves’
    • ‘Instead, they will be too busy customising their character with hairstyles and tattoos, or getting fat by gorging on junk food.’
    • ‘Again, it goes back to social expectation - being able to gorge on food has now become a sort of unconsidered fashion.’
    • ‘It is said that he once excluded all other foods, gorging only on broccoli prepared in the Apician manner for an entire month.’
    • ‘She found that the cat had been gorging on the food I left out and that her stomach was completely distended.’
    • ‘So your waistline has expanded after all that Christmas gorging!’
    • ‘Not only it is tasty, on a shoestring budget one can gorge on a variety of food.’
    • ‘Hours earlier, even as we were gorging the delicious food on offering in a beachfront restaurant, a suburban train had flashed past, ripping through the silence.’
    • ‘After gorging ourselves on food and cake, his mother and I decided to explore a little further and went walking off down a windy track.’
    • ‘After gorging on the sumptuous buffet they all danced and sang to the sounds of the Caribbean / Filipino Band ‘Colours’.’
    • ‘Soon, both boys were gorging on buttery popcorn and the big-screen TV lit up the non-lighted room with flashing scenes.’
    • ‘I wasn't preaching to people who dedicated Thanksgiving Day to gorging on turkey and then crashing on the couch in front of a football game.’
    • ‘After gorging on a feast, don't hit the roads drunk and drowsy.’
    • ‘I half-expected to see Grace Adler walk up to the podium and complain about men while gorging on chocolate silk pie.’
    • ‘According to them the only drawback they'd encountered was that they had both gained 8 kilos gorging on Thai cuisine.’
    • ‘It felt like I had just spent the last two hours gorging on gummy bears.’
    • ‘After gorging on holiday goodies, sticking to your resolution to hit the gym is easier said than done.’
    • ‘In those days the North Sea was full of tunny - the giant tuna - that were in gorging on shoals of herring and mackerel.’
    • ‘In fact individuals often become traffic casualties when flying too low after gorging on fruits.’
    • ‘When there is a loss of habitat, the woodland caribou becomes a prime target for wolves that gorge on their plentiful prey.’
    • ‘You can gorge yourself on any amount of chocolate and not feel guilty.’
    stuff, cram, fill
    eat greedily, eat hungrily, guzzle, gobble, bolt, gulp, gulp down, swallow hurriedly, devour, wolf, cram, binge-eat
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/ɡôrj/ /ɡɔrdʒ/


    one's gorge rises
    • One is sickened or disgusted.

      ‘looking at it, Wendy felt her gorge rise’
      • ‘But the fellow is so blaringly (sorry, glaringly) mendacious and so sickeningly politically correct - in short, so palpably a 21st century man - that my gorge rises.’
      • ‘God, just when I try to think of more to say about the show, my gorge rises and I can't imagine that any network concerned about the quality of programming, would have canceled it.’
      • ‘I don't know about you but my gorge rises when a TV personality who's made his bones with long ironic sighs and sideglances starts to speak phrases like ‘We need you to be honest!’’
      • ‘And yet my gorge rises at those fatuous journalists continually prating about this ‘Greatest War of all time,’ this ‘Great Drama,’ this ‘world catastrophe unparalleled in human history,’ because it is easy to see that they are really more thrilled than shocked by the immensity of the War.’
      • ‘All, in a rumbling tone of ‘Then all I have to say is,’ returns Podsnap, putting the thing away with his right arm, ‘that my gorge rises against such a marriage - that it offends and disgusts me - that it makes me sick - and that I desire to know no more about it.’’
      • ‘Before a few days are out, I figure the Nautilus will lie abreast of Nova Scotia, and from there to Newfoundland is the mouth of a large gulf, and the St. Lawrence empties into that gulf, and the St. Lawrence is my own river, the river running by Quebec, my hometown - and when I think about all this, my gorge rises and my hair stands on end!’
      • ‘I can't help it, my gorge rises to overflowing every time I think about the unbelievably stupid mistakes our leaders made.’
      • ‘The Austens were very much fringe types, and when Austen forces us to listen to a speech like that of Sir Thomas on his expectations of what a Fanny Price will probably be, and our gorge rises it is because Austen's gorge rises.’


Middle English (as a verb): from Old French gorger, from gorge ‘throat’, based on Latin gurges ‘whirlpool’. The noun originally meant ‘throat’ and is from Old French gorge; gorge (sense 1 of the noun) dates from the mid 18th century.