- The definition of a ferret is a small animal with a long, slender body, short legs and a long tail, often kept as a pet.
An example of a ferret is a pet weasel.
- Ferret means a narrow ribbon of fabric.
An example of a ferret is a strap over the shoulder of a dress.
- Ferret is defined as to search for, or to force out of hiding.
- An example of ferret is to investigate the hidden details of a historical mystery.
- An example of ferret is to search through rooms to find a criminal who has been hiding.
A young ferret.
Origin of ferret; from Italian fioretti, floss silk, origin, originally plural of fioretto, diminutive of fiore, a flower ; from Classical Latin flos, flower
- a small, domesticated European polecat with pink eyes and yellowish fur, easily tamed for hunting rabbits, rats, etc.
- a rare, black-footed weasel (Mustela nigripes) of the W U.S.
Origin of ferretMiddle English feret ; from Old French furet ; from Late Latin furetus, diminutive of furo, a ferret ; from Classical Latin fur, thief: see furtive
- to force out of hiding with or as if with a ferret
- to search for persistently and discover (facts, the truth, etc.); search: with out
- Archaic to keep after; harass
- to hunt with ferrets
- to search around
- A domesticated mustelid mammal (Mustela furo syn. Mustela putorius subsp. furo) with an elongated flexible body, often kept as a pet and sometimes trained to hunt rats or rabbits.
- A black-footed ferret.
verbfer·ret·ed, fer·ret·ing, fer·rets
- a. To hunt (rabbits, for example) with ferrets.b. To drive out, as from a hiding place; expel.
- To uncover and bring to light by searching. Often used with out: “Their work merely points the way for others to ferret out the core components of all proteins” (Natalie Angier).
- To hound or harry persistently; worry.
- To engage in hunting with ferrets.
- To search intensively.
Origin of ferretMiddle English furet, ferret, from Old French furet, from Vulgar Latin *fūrittus, diminutive of Latin fūr, thief; see bher-1 in Indo-European roots.
Origin of ferretProbably alteration of Italian fioretti, floss silk, pl. of fioretto, diminutive of fiore, flower, from Latin flōs, flōr-, flower; see bhel-3 in Indo-European roots.
(third-person singular simple present ferrets, present participle ferreting, simple past and past participle ferreted)