Definition of gaucho in US English:



  • A cowboy of the South American pampas.

    ‘Argentinian gauchos’
    • ‘The gauchos of Argentina wore chaps that hardened from the foam and sweat of the horse's body, causing them to walk with flexed knees.’
    • ‘Uruguayans appreciate many forms of music, whether it comes from the popular guitar, introduced by Spanish settlers, and the songs of the gauchos, or from a formal orchestra.’
    • ‘Images of gauchos speculatively transformed into fishermen struck a wry note in an otherwise disturbing account of man's increasingly uneasy relationship with the planet.’
    • ‘During the 1800s, the gaucho, the Argentine cowboy, came to represent a free-spirited symbol for the country.’
    • ‘They are blessed with speed, agility and a very pleasing nature and broken in by the old and traditional way of the herdsmen, the gauchos.’
    • ‘Chances he'd make any deals in the bunkhouse were slim, however, given what his potential clients earned a month, and given that the gauchos tend to disdain Mexicans and stay away from anything stronger than alcohol and tobacco.’
    • ‘Many landowners believed that gauchos were ill-suited for agricultural labor and favored the hiring of foreigners.’
    • ‘A condor soared high above me as I watched two gauchos on horseback gallop across the plain chasing a herd of horses that they then drove through the river in an explosion of spray.’
    • ‘The pampas were where the gauchos, nomadic half-Indian herdsmen, roamed and worked.’
    • ‘His family had Argentine connections and for some time after the war he worked as a gaucho on a cattle ranch in South America.’
    • ‘The Overture is based on a poem describing the impressions of a Creole gaucho, a cowboy of sorts, who came to Buenos Aires and saw a production of Gounod's Faust.’
    • ‘But the new riders are lonely gauchos from Chile and Peru, and their 21 st-century frontier is a place where the cowboy myth meets a harsh reality.’
    • ‘It's ironic that the South American gaucho would travel all the way to Idaho to pursue the cowboy myth, since the number of real cowboys in the American West has dwindled to almost nothing.’
    • ‘More sedate visitors will enjoy poring over family treasures, such as old photos and maps, watching gauchos at work, or reading a book under the austral summer's midnight sun.’
    • ‘In the south plains regions near the border with Argentina, the gaucho style is still worn.’
    • ‘A South American gaucho is an expert horseman, but here he has leapt to the ground and challenged a rival to equal or defeat him in ever more energetic and virile stamping movements.’
    • ‘The original gauchos were an equestrian ethnic group similar to North American cowboys and Ukrainian Cossacks.’
    • ‘Uruguay's gauchos (cow-boys) proudly wear the distinctive clothing of their ancestors.’
    • ‘What they have here instead are gauchos, the last real cowboys.’
    • ‘Once favoured by the gauchos of the Argentinian pampas, it is fantastically fashionable, and promises to help combat stress by galvanising the nervous and immune systems.’


Latin American Spanish, probably from Araucanian kauču ‘friend’.