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Related to gonif: goniff, goyim


Variant of ganef.


(ˈgɑ nəf)

also gonif

n. Slang.
a thief, swindler, crook, or rascal.
[1920–25; < Yiddish < Hebrew gannābh]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.gonif - (Yiddish) a thief or dishonest person or scoundrel (often used as a general term of abuse)
Yiddish - a dialect of High German including some Hebrew and other words; spoken in Europe as a vernacular by many Jews; written in the Hebrew script
offender, wrongdoer - a person who transgresses moral or civil law
References in periodicals archive ?
From the shtetl we inherited the yenta, the yeshiva bucher, the gonif, the shtarker; the postwar era gave American Jews self-hating punchlines like the JAP and the nebbish; the Soviet Union had its "Rabinovich" jokes and Israel its brash "muscle Jews" who know how to clean a gun and never saw a line they didn't want to push to the front of.
But closest to her heart is Dave at Night, published in 1999, about a boy living in a Hebrew orphanage in New York City who runs away one night and finds new friends at a Harlem "rent party"--a rich African American girl named Irma Lee and an old Jewish gonif [thief] with a good heart.
For many, however, the memories of the old country were timeless, necessary antidotes to the confusion wrought by "America gonif.