• WordNet 3.6
    • adj woolgathering dreamy in mood or nature "a woolgathering moment"
    • n woolgathering an idle indulgence in fantasy
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Woolgathering Indulgence in idle imagination; a foolish or useless pursuit or design. "His wits were a woolgathering , as they say."
    • a Woolgathering Indulging in a vagrant or idle exercise of the imagination; roaming upon a fruitless quest; idly fanciful.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n woolgathering The act of gathering wool: usually applied figuratively to the indulgence of idle fancies or to any foolish or fruitless pursuit. The allusion is probably to the practice of gathering the tufts of wool to be found on bushes and hedges, necessitating much wandering to little purpose.
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In literature:

Master Pennybet, in the common way of tired children, finished the day in listless woolgathering.
"Tell England" by Ernest Raymond
With his wits thus woolgathering as he walked, he one day suddenly tumbled into a pit.
"A Survey of Russian Literature, with Selections" by Isabel Florence Hapgood
My wits have been woolgathering.
"The Monk of Hambleton" by Armstrong Livingston
It was the kind of woolgathering that drove Donna Austen insane.
"The Samurai Strategy" by Thomas Hoover
In a woolgathering way, the animal acknowledged Reuben's feet, but had no time for them.
"Wilderness of Spring" by Edgar Pangborn

In poetry:

He who keeps through all his days
Open eyes of wonder
Is the lord of sky ways,
And the earth thereunder:
For the heart to do and sing
Comes of youth's woolgathering.
"Woolgathering" by Wilfrid Wilson Gibson
YOUTH that goes woolgathering,
Mooning and stargazing,
Always finding everything
Full of fresh amazing,
Best will meet the moment's need
When the dream brings forth the deed.
"Woolgathering" by Wilfrid Wilson Gibson

In news:

Critic's Notebook: Patti Smith's 'Woolgathering'.
Critic's Notebook: Patti Smith's ' Woolgathering '.