Definition of nugget in English:



  • 1A small lump of gold or other precious metal found ready-formed in the earth.

    • ‘Will you be hunting for small objects like coins, jewelry and gold nuggets, or searching for a large cache or object?’
    • ‘The final chapter is an interesting collection of photographs of unusually shaped gold nuggets and masses.’
    • ‘But there are gold nuggets amid the gravel, and that's not just my opinion.’
    • ‘Explaining the shape of gold nuggets has long been a problem, because they have neither the size nor the shape of gold fragments released from bedrock by weathering.’
    • ‘But it can also reward someone who tripped over a gold nugget on their way to pick up some more lumps of asphalt.’
    • ‘But there may be gold nuggets at the bottom of the pan.’
    • ‘As part of this dream, he sent a group off to the north to start building a sawmill, and, of course, they came back saying they had found gold nuggets.’
    • ‘In the 1981 Sydney performance, gold nuggets, a gold boomerang, and a live diamond python rested on the table.’
    • ‘Nearby Wickenburg is a tiny town, founded in 1863 when Henry Wickenburg discovered gold nuggets in a rock formation that he called Vulture Mine.’
    • ‘On display are fifty-five specimens, including nuggets and crystallized gold, from worldwide localities, with emphasis on Nevada and California.’
    • ‘Gold nuggets by the pound were available from both the Lena River area of Russia as well as from Western Australia and Victoria, Australia.’
    • ‘Through time, as the quartz is eroded away, the gold is concentrated as nuggets and dust in streams and erosional plains.’
    • ‘The Tainos mined gold and beat the nuggets into small plates.’
    • ‘This declaration resulted in gold nuggets and samples beginning to accumulate in private collections all over Russia.’
    • ‘In economic terms, they are the gold nuggets in the economic mine of prosperity.’
    • ‘At one time, large nuggets of gold could be found lying on the Earth's surface.’
    • ‘And I'll give each of you over a hundred gold nuggets to find her.’
    • ‘It would be interesting to compile real-life statistics like this about various products as these numbers are as difficult to find as marble-sized gold nuggets in a stream.’
    • ‘In January 1848, a work crew at John Sutter's mill, near Sacramento, California, came across a few select nuggets of gold.’
    • ‘The well-known hoard of chemically inert gold, whose nuggets are not sharp enough to pierce the delegate membrane of a dragon's outer hide, forms a safe and comfortable nesting place.’
    1. 1.1A small chunk or lump of another substance.
      ‘tiny nuggets of chicken and shrimp’
      • ‘The ‘dead man’ accepted nuggets of chicken and paneer!’
      • ‘The large plate comes with crispy Wan Tun (a kind of hot, crispy batter), prawn toast, spring rolls, crispy seaweed, spicy lamb satay, a beef parcel and spicy meat nuggets.’
      • ‘The children's meals are just miniature versions of the dishes on the main menu; thankfully there are no chips or chicken nuggets in sight.’
      • ‘Feeding is kept to the minimum, with tiny nuggets of shop bought ‘punch crumb’ or very finely liquidised bread sparingly used.’
      • ‘The Little House, at 32 Waterman Street, offers young children and their parents a play area and activities as well as favourite dishes such as cheese toasties, chicken nuggets, chips and toasted muffins.’
      • ‘Outside the gates, a group of older students huddle round, tucking into chicken nuggets and chips from the local fast food shop.’
      • ‘Since the feet are the furthest point of the body from the heart, acid metabolites in blood, unused calcium and other organic substances settle on the feet, where they form tiny air bubbles and nuggets.’
      • ‘The company says it has already improved its chicken nuggets, which now only contain breast meat and 30 per cent less salt.’
      • ‘Good food came at a price; and more often than not, the rabble were fed on chicken nuggets and chips in a mediocre restaurant offering a ‘children's menu’.’
      • ‘My daughter had her usual chicken nuggets and chips, for £3.50.’
      lump, chunk, small piece, hunk, mass, clump, wad, gobbet, globule
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2A valuable idea or fact.
      ‘nuggets of information’
      • ‘He is an enthusiast rather than an expert, and as such he makes an eager, engaging guide, tirelessly scattering nuggets of fact and diving with gusto into Shakespeare's writing at every opportunity.’
      • ‘The magazine, while initially short on the culture-war screeds that earned Buchanan his infamy, has provided a few nuggets one might expect from a Buchanan endeavor.’
      • ‘In Socratic style he mines the best of each perspective for the gold nugget of truth.’
      • ‘While a few gold nuggets can be found here and there, this Goldmine is mostly a bust.’
      • ‘If you're able to endure this feeling of impending doom, however, there's a good chance you'll be rewarded at the end with a tiny nugget of hope and almost-joy.’
      • ‘No fact is to small to overlook, no nugget of information too insignificant to discard.’
      • ‘Overall, I am betting there will be at least a handful of valuable nuggets for everyone, irrespective of your experience level.’
      • ‘This is a really enjoyable read, it does contain useful nuggets of information for anyone trying to live in Paris, it keeps you laughing, it will reinforce your prejudice that striking really is a the French national hobby.’
      • ‘There are always nuggets of fascinating information in the annual British Social Attitudes surveys.’
      • ‘It's one of those tiny little nuggets of film magic.’
      • ‘Spin-off projects came naturally from his ability and regular habit of recognizing valuable nuggets in random scientific observations.’
      • ‘There's wisdom in the words, and I let them settle around me, feeling as if I've been handed a nugget of something valuable, something that might apply to me.’
      • ‘Throughout the book, there are nuggets of gold, not to mention a completist's dream of regional brewing styles, phone numbers of breweries which accept visitors and tasting notes.’
      • ‘Trivia quizzes apart, it could be argued that there is little to be gained from digesting these nuggets of information.’
      • ‘While most of it was uneven, there are a few nuggets of comedy gold.’
      • ‘Their paws are poised, ready to pounce on ideas and nuggets of information.’
      • ‘Okay, now write down those valuable nuggets of wisdom, and email them to me.’
      • ‘There are some valuable nuggets to be gotten from this audio track, but to be honest they are few and far between.’
      • ‘Intriguing and engaging, this is a ‘must’ for Roscommon folk, a veritable gold mine of rich nuggets.’
      • ‘It does not matter that, on detailed analysis, it contained some valuable nuggets.’


Mid 19th century: apparently from dialect nug lump of unknown origin.