Definition of quarry noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈkwɒri//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈkwɔːri//
    , NAmE//ˈkwɑːri//
    (pl. quarries)
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  1. 1[countable] a place where large amounts of stone, etc. are dug out of the ground a slate quarry the site of a disused quarry compare mine
  2. 2[singular] an animal or a person that is being hunted or followed synonym prey The hunters lost sight of their quarry in the forest. The photographers pursued their quarry through the streets.
  3. Word Originnoun sense 1 Middle English: from a variant of medieval Latin quareria, from Old French quarriere, based on Latin quadrum ‘a square’. The verb dates from the late 18th cent. noun sense 2 Middle English: from Old French cuiree, alteration, influenced by cuir ‘leather’ and curer ‘clean, disembowel’, of couree, based on Latin cor ‘heart’. Originally the term denoted the parts of a deer that were placed on the hide and given as a reward to the hounds.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: quarry

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