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Definition of "pigeonhole" [pi•geon•hole]

  • A small compartment or recess, as in a desk, for holding papers; a cubbyhole. (noun)
  • A specific, often oversimplified category. (noun)
  • The small hole or holes in a pigeon loft for nesting. (noun)
  • To place or file in a small compartment or recess. (verb-transitive)
  • To classify mentally; categorize. (verb-transitive)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "pigeonhole" in a sentence
  • "Because I can't really separate the new from the old, the easiest way to clean out a label (what I call a pigeonhole) is to actually have enough time to deal with everything and empty it out."
  • "With "You Are Where You Live," now you can discover what your pigeonhole is called -- just enter your ZIP code and the service will cough up your most likely demographic info (I'm either a Successful Single, a Mover And Shaker, a Mid-Life Success, a Great Beginning or an Urban Up And Comer)."
  • "So when they came to label the pigeonhole in the mailroom where letters are placed for the newest member of the Obama family, they settled on the word "Dog"."