Goose egg

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Goose egg is an idiom that has been in use for over one hundred years. We will examine the meaning of the idiom goose egg, where it came from, and some examples of its use in sentences.

Goose egg as an idiom has two different definitions. Goose egg may mean zero or nothing, especially when referring to a sports score, or it may mean zero or nothing in other circumstances. This use of the idiom compares the shape of a goose egg to a zero. The second definition of goose egg is a lump that arises from a blow, especially on the head; such lumps are often shaped like eggs. The idiom goose egg came into use in the United States in the 1880s and is an Americanization of the British version, duck egg, in use since the mid-1800s. The plural form is goose eggs.


Entering Thursday at Ohio State, the Gophers men’s basketball team had a goose egg in the column on its résumé under true road wins, but Marcus Carr’s three-pointer with 3.3 seconds left gave his team its first road victory this season in a 62-59 win in front of a stunned announced crowd of 13,234 at Value City Arena. (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

The No. 7 University of Wisconsin men’s hockey team (4-2-0) responded well Saturday after laying a goose egg on Friday against No. 11 Clarkson University (3-2-1). (The Badger Herald)

The man had a large goose egg and laceration above his left eye which was bleeding heavily. (The Lockport Union-Sun & Journal)

A bar employee said he had “just a goose egg” and he refused medical treatment. (The Daily Inter Lake)