Definition of gallop in English:



  • 1The fastest pace of a horse or other quadruped, with all the feet off the ground together in each stride.

    ‘the horse broke into a furious gallop’
    mass noun ‘a mounted police charge at full gallop’
    • ‘The large horse was full of energy as he charged down the dirt road at a full gallop.’
    • ‘She kicked her horse into a full gallop and broke away from them, who, after only a moment's hesitation, turned and fled in the opposite direction.’
    • ‘Alexander wondered how it was even possible to strike a target from the back of a horse at full gallop while wielding the crossbow with one hand.’
    • ‘Some of the men broke ranks in a furious gallop to the river where they gulped water in joyous abandon.’
    • ‘He kept making him go faster until we were at a full gallop.’
    • ‘His gun bellowed in his hand and the horses jumped to a gallop.’
    • ‘One need only watch a rodeo or horse race to see how quickly a horse can go from standing still to a full gallop.’
    • ‘He rode his horse at a full gallop across the countryside, taking in the fresh, cold air.’
    • ‘He booted Sal in the ribs and the horse leaped into a full gallop.’
    • ‘His approach was as a cavalry charge - from walk to canter to full gallop, yelling out arrest commands in English.’
    • ‘She urged the horse into a full gallop, wanting to get there as quickly as possible.’
    • ‘He will, however, appreciate tomorrow's return to a distance just short of eight furlongs and will surely get a furious gallop, which seems to suit him.’
    • ‘The mare at once sprang into the devouring gallop of a horse giving it her all.’
    • ‘The instant the reins were passed, the horse bolted to a full gallop flying down the dirt road.’
    • ‘At the foot of a slope our horses were urged into a full gallop, jumping over rocks until we got to the cattle.’
    • ‘She manages to turn the horse in the direction of the house, then spurs it into a full gallop.’
    • ‘Knights ride their horses at full gallop and are almost all successful at driving a spear through a 3-inch ring.’
    • ‘Looking over my shoulder I could see him coming at a full gallop.’
    • ‘Regular practice makes them so skilful that they can control their horses at a full gallop, even on a steep slope.’
    • ‘With new resolve, Katherine started the horse to the right, and was about to urge it into a full gallop when something caught her eye.’
    1. 1.1 A ride on a horse at a gallop.
      ‘Wilfred went for a gallop on the sands’
      • ‘The third afternoon, when he had watched for her in a fury of disappointment, he ordered his horse and went for a gallop down the sunken road to the mill.’
      • ‘But when I was invited to go for a gallop in the forest my nerves gave out again.’
    2. 1.2 A very fast pace of running by a person.
      ‘she ran after them at a gallop’
      figurative ‘West Ham began at the gallop’
      • ‘Some of the men broke ranks in a furious gallop to the river where they gulped water in joyous abandon.’
      • ‘His run turned into a frenzied gallop, his face thrust out to the fans.’
      • ‘He took victory in the Chesterfield Spire Midsummer Road Race from an eight-man gallop on the hilly Baslow course in the Peak District.’
      • ‘He stood the pace better and eight minutes after the break Will snapped up a loose ball and outpaced the defence with a length of the field gallop.’
      • ‘The men now began a hurried gallop down the streets, on the way to the judicial building.’
      • ‘They frustrated the home support with incisive counter-attacking football, allowing a new on-loan recruit a couple of gallops at central defensive pairing Mark and Stephen.’
    3. 1.3British A track or ground where horses are exercised at a gallop.
      ‘Dancer fractured a foreleg on the gallops’
      • ‘This horse has been beaten at home on the gallops, and holds less entries than the others, but I will go home and think about the Derby.’
      • ‘I'll still be working in the office and riding the horses on the gallops.’
      • ‘O'Brien, who won the Juvenile last year with undefeated champion Johannesburg, said he was pleased with the gallops and was optimistic the three colts would run well on the dirt.’
      • ‘Speaking from the gallops at Manor Farm yesterday, he was happy to report that all the preparations are going well.’
      • ‘He missed out on his bid for a historic fourth title after bursting a blood vessel on the gallops eight days before the big race.’
      • ‘A high-class three-year-old two seasons ago, he was slightly below-par last term, but his form on the gallops this spring, and since being gelded, has been nothing short of impressive.’
      • ‘He built a sand gallop on the 20 acres, and a field on the far side of the local GAA pitch was turned into a grass gallop.’
      • ‘I rode him in a racecourse gallop at Bangor last week and I am very hopeful.’
      • ‘And the Forestry Commission has opened a free, all-weather sand gallop at Horrocks Fold on Scout Road which is proving popular with many riders.’
      • ‘He would have been the prefect buyer for his country cottage, with a 5½-acre facility, 42 boxes, an automatic horse walker and all-weather gallops.’
      • ‘Derby winner North Light will run at Longchamp after pleasing connections in a gallops workout on Sunday.’
      • ‘All-weather gallops have ensured horse training can take place all-year round and he wants ‘to make the place neater and tidier and better’.’
      • ‘The new owners will be able to visit trainers' yards and to watch the horses work on the gallops.’
      • ‘His winner, who was expected to go novice chasing, suffered two hairline fractures of the cannon bone on the gallops and it appeared as if he would miss the entire season.’
      • ‘They are trained around a section of the gallops which is modelled on Tattenham Corner, so none of them should be surprised when they meet the real thing.’
      • ‘It wasn't so long ago that I was riding out alongside the youngster on the gallops at Ayr racecourse, his father having sent the boy to her yard in his school holidays to learn the rudiments of riding racehorses.’
      • ‘Thursday has been a long and typical day, supervising the horses on the gallops during the morning, followed by two winners at Thurles while the boss spent the afternoon working with the other 150 horses in the yard.’
      • ‘He is not the quickest horse at home but those who catch pigeons on the gallops don't catch anything on the racecourse.’
      • ‘Early arrives saw the horses working on the gallops next to the racecourses at 9am.’
      • ‘There have been several other fatalities away from the track on training gallops.’


  • 1no object, with adverbial of direction (of a horse) go at the pace of a gallop.

    ‘we galloped along the sand’
    ‘the sound of galloping hooves’
    • ‘A herd of wild horses galloped across the pampas, tossing their heads in a display of wild exuberance, against a backdrop of snow covered mountains.’
    • ‘The horse gallops at a consistent pace and John increases the speed as he sees Isabelle hovering by the stable door.’
    • ‘Then, with a shake of the reins, the horse galloped ahead and disappeared into the mist.’
    • ‘The clopping of hooves could be heard faintly over the wind as a band of riders on black stallions came galloping along side of us.’
    • ‘The best adrenaline rush I've ever had was when I went on a two-day trek through Belize in Central America and my horse went galloping out of control in the jungle.’
    • ‘Cole looks at her as his horse gallops past, but does not stop.’
    • ‘From the valley comes a drumbeat of hooves as a tall horse gallops through the dusk shadows, bare but for a slim, young boy.’
    • ‘The train was moving relatively slowly, and the horses were soon galloping on our side.’
    • ‘If a horse is galloping at speed, totally out of control and not responding to the rider's commands, the situation can be life threatening.’
    • ‘Suddenly a brown haired stallion came galloping out of the brush.’
    • ‘With 35 horses galloping in a straight line over nine furlongs this famous cavalry charge is a thrilling race, made even more exciting by the hope of backing the winner.’
    • ‘He saw a great expanse of lush green meadow, where wild ponies galloped free and careless in its serenity.’
    • ‘The horses galloped at an astonishing pace, racing for the edge of the forest, through the Hollow Mists of Leba, desperate to escape.’
    • ‘Before I knew it, my horse was galloping in the sand.’
    • ‘I did have a great experience earlier on the Isle of Skye, stopped to feed a horse on the way back to where I was staying and ended up running up and down the road with the horse galloping alongside me, keeping pace.’
    • ‘A horse swiftly galloped past the small slim girl gathering fruits along the path.’
    • ‘He had a great liking for horses and he could often be observed on a summer's evening, watching his beautiful mares and foals gallop along the Banks.’
    • ‘Her horse galloped up to the shore of the pool and along the grove of trees.’
    • ‘He could hear the horse galloping off before even the bang of the door slam faded out.’
    • ‘The horse gallops along, seemingly oblivious to its slipping rider.’
    race, canter, run, rush, dash, tear, sprint, bolt, fly, shoot, dart, hurry, hasten, speed, streak, hurtle, career, hare, scamper, scurry, scud, go like lighting, go like the wind
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1with object and adverbial of direction Make (a horse) gallop.
      ‘Fred galloped the horse off to the start’
      • ‘O'Brien was galloping his horses up a really steep hill at his brother's farm when the master trainers in England had theirs out for a stroll.’
      • ‘The win was the first of the year for the trainer, who owns and trains the three horses in his stable and, at 71, also gallops them.’
      • ‘The girl - who didn't wear a pair of shoes until she was eight - would rise at dawn and gallop her horse over the misty hills at the very start of the day.’
      • ‘I had to gallop a white Spanish horse across the battlefield toward New Zealand's white snow-capped mountains.’
      • ‘‘Then don't misuse it,’ she said, and turned and galloped the horse back towards the army.’
      • ‘I do a lot of jogging with him for three or four days after he breezes and then start galloping him because he does work so fast.’
      • ‘Alas, the wish list also contains somewhat less thrilling aspirations such as - I kid you not - riding a roller-coaster, galloping a horse across a beach and wondering at a waterfall.’
      • ‘He has been a trainer for 53 years and occasionally still gallops the horses in his care.’
      • ‘Saumell, who is in his 70s, rode his last winner in 1978 and still galloped horses until three years ago.’
      • ‘During Cowboy Mounted Shooting, cowboys and cowgirls galloping horses shoot balloons with blanks.’
      • ‘He galloped his horse to the north, followed by his henchmen and Wong's group.’
      • ‘He also spent five years galloping horses for Racing Hall of Fame trainers.’
      • ‘One of my friends, Henry, who gallops horses at Laurel took me to the backside.’
      • ‘He'd never known him to gallop his horse, then leave it standing without cooling him down gently first.’
      • ‘He galloped horses Tuesday at Calder Race Course and on Wednesday was at Belmont Park to breeze horses for trainers.’
      • ‘He walks and feeds him, and even gallops him.’
      • ‘It caught on fire and we galloped our horses to the woods, and then heard a huge explosion, followed by the sight of orange flames.’
      • ‘The game continued at an enthusiastic pace with the men throwing themselves wholeheartedly into competition with as much spirit as they showed for galloping their horses.’
      • ‘A minute later, two braves rode off, galloping their horses to the west.’
      • ‘To gallop the horse now would be stupid because they were both cold and tired and stiff from their injuries.’
    2. 1.2 (of a person) run fast.
      ‘Leota galloped in from the halfway line’
      • ‘As soon as I undid the latch, he was galloping past me.’
      • ‘In short order another 30-yard drive, this time by Fitzgerald, was not too far away, and the game was very much alive as Murphy galloped through only to shoot wide.’
      • ‘No sooner had we pulled up outside a low wall and started walking a dirt road to the gate than Ben literally galloped out of the house and threw his arms around Papa.’
      • ‘The officer went galloping out of the room, and immediately returned with a Bible and put it on my lap with great respect.’
      • ‘Hawkins, gaining in confidence as the game progressed, galloped down the left and looped in a pinpoint cross for him to attack from point blank range.’
      • ‘He galloped towards the goal, shook off the challenge of John and shot high and right past him.’
      • ‘Almost a quarter-of-an-hour in, and it was his cross which he headed just wide, the Liverpool man galloping in from his berth of the left of midfield to meet the ball.’
      • ‘Soon thereafter a man gallops wildly into the station.’
      • ‘He was breathing heavily from galloping at a rapid speed.’
      • ‘Fearing he had lost too much time, the lad galloped as fast as he could to the palace.’
      • ‘He came galloping down the hill right away, and the three of them had their first practice right there in the woodland glen, and I was lucky enough to be the first mortal man to witness their music.’
      • ‘Then a dangerous passing movement was stopped by a smart interception by Storey, who galloped in under the posts.’
      • ‘The advice conjures up all sorts of funny images of welly-clad officials galloping away from stick-wielding farmers at marts around the country.’
      • ‘At lunch and tea we took over the outfield, using the long-empty lemonade bottle as our bat, piled carrier bags as the stumps and chased the rubber ball over the turf on which our heroes had galloped.’
      • ‘Ten minutes later he came galloping down the stairs to the foyer where they were already waiting.’
      • ‘As the Westmeath forward forced his way through for a last goal chance, he galloped up to his shoulder.’
      • ‘Instantly the four girls galloped to the broken fence.’
      • ‘She frowned and squinted when she spied a figure galloping across the lush, green hills.’
      • ‘They then created day light when he appeared on the wing to gallop 30 yards to the corner.’
      • ‘He was patiently waiting for her at the top of the hill, so she quickly galloped up the slope to catch up with him.’
      race, canter, run, rush, dash, tear, sprint, bolt, fly, shoot, dart, hurry, hasten, speed, streak, hurtle, career, hare, scamper, scurry, scud, go like lighting, go like the wind
      View synonyms
  • 2no object, with adverbial of direction Proceed at great speed.

    ‘don't gallop through your speech’
    • ‘Several years ago, while teaching one of those history surveys that gallops across great events as if they were pebbles at Belmont, I asked my students to name a revolutionary.’
    • ‘The approach pays dividends in lending the film a sprightly air and making it accessible to all as it gallops through events.’
    • ‘I am galloping through a couple of books a week at the moment.’
    • ‘Few people are likely to read his census, but anyone who appreciates the printed word will gallop through his new account of how it came to be.’
    • ‘Three utterly madcap men in tights and sneakers take the theatre by storm as they gallop through the tragedies, histories and comedies at a speed that will leave you gasping.’
    1. 2.1 (of a process or event) progress in a rapid and seemingly uncontrollable manner.
      ‘his life gallops headlong towards disaster’
      ‘galloping inflation’
      • ‘The pace gallops along, the plot is difficult to predict, if not well nigh impossible, and the narrative draws you inside the covers so that every intrusion which makes you put the book down is resented.’
      • ‘In the later scenes, it grows more formulaic, galloping towards a happy ending with unseemly haste, burdening the actors with unconvincing old age make-up and testing the audience with corny platitudes.’
      • ‘The honeymoon has truly ended, and the relationship galloping towards divorce.’
      • ‘To the fate felt in the blood and acknowledged by the intelligence is added concern for his partner as the disease gallops towards consummation.’
      • ‘A sudden collapse of the pound could lead to equal and opposite problems, such as galloping inflation.’
      • ‘The rate of inflation in Bangladesh has galloped forward from under 2 in 2001 to above 6 in the recent year.’
      • ‘Perhaps inevitably, the sheer quantity of material leaves one gasping for breath at times - he gallops from one work to the next, allowing each only the briefest of examination.’
      • ‘For a society that still relies very clearly on the privatised, domestic role played by the family, the extent to which women's relative equality to men has galloped ahead raises some wider questions.’
      • ‘He was one of the few economists willing to predict early in 2000 that the Irish inflation rate was threatening to gallop toward 6 per cent or higher.’
      • ‘The other is a modern magus, galloping towards his fiftieth birthday with a lifetime of grand work behind him, and so much more still to do.’
      • ‘His performance is superb and the change in his face as he gallops towards psychological collapse is remarkable to watch.’
      • ‘They also created a ‘revolving door’ syndrome in the sector, with sought-after staff galloping from one company to the next, on the scent of yet another lucrative pay rise.’
      • ‘It has not exactly galloped, raced, or even trotted through the House, having had its first reading in June 2001-nearly 2 years ago.’
      • ‘The mint escaped the beds and started galloping toward the house, with the snow in summer in hot pursuit.’


Early 16th century: from Old French galop (noun), galoper, variants of Old Northern French walop, waloper (see wallop).