ETYM OE goot, got, gat, AS. gât; akin to Dutch geit, Old High Germ. geiz, German geiss, Icel. geit, Swed. get, Dan. ged, Goth. gaits, Latin haedus a young goat, kid.
Any of numerous agile ruminants related to sheep but having a beard and straight horns; SYN. caprine animal.
Ruminant mammal of the genus Capra in the family Bovidae, closely related to the sheep. Both males and females have horns and beards. They are sure-footed animals, and feed on shoots and leaves more than on grass.
Domestic varieties are descended from the scimitar-horned wild goat C. aegagrus and have been kept for over 9,000 years in S Europe and Asia. They are kept for milk, or for mohair (the angora and cashmere). Wild species include the ibex C. ibex of the Alps, and markhor C. falconeri of the Himalayas, 1 m/3 ft high and with long twisted horns. The Rocky Mountain goat Oreamnos americanus is a “goat antelope” and is not closely related to true goats.