Any of about 30 species of nocturnal North American rodents constituting the genus Perognathus (family Heteromyidae), having fur-lined, external cheek pouches that open alongside the mouth. Pocket mice are yellowish brown to dark gray and are 2.5–5 in. (6–13 cm) long, excluding a tail of about the same length. They are usually solitary and inhabit dry and desert regions. They carry food (mainly seeds) in their pouches and store it in their burrows. Spiny pocket mice (most in the genera Liomys and Heteromys; family Heteromyidae), found from Mexico through Central America, are gray, brown, or black nocturnal burrowers that inhabit wet, forested regions as well as dry country.
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Eastern pocket gopher (Geomys).
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Billiards game played on an oblong table having six pockets with 15 object balls and a white cue ball. At the beginning of play, the balls are arranged (racked) in a pyramid formation with its apex on a spot near the foot of the table. The first player breaks the formation by driving the cue ball into it; to continue play, he or she must hit a ball into a pocket. In the popular “8-ball” game, the first player (or team) to sink either the seven solid-coloured balls (numbered 1–7) or the seven banded (striped) balls (9–15), finishing with the black 8-ball, wins. In “9-ball,” only the balls numbered 1–9 are used, and they must be sunk sequentially; the player who sinks the 9-ball wins. Pool probably reached its present form in England and France by circa 1800; today it is most popular in North America.
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In European clothing pockets began by being hung like purses from a belt, which could be concealed beneath a coat or jerkin and reached through a slit in the outer garment. The word appears in Middle English as poket, and is taken from a Norman diminutive of Old French poke, pouque, modern poche, cf. pouch. The form "poke" is now only used dialectically, or in such proverbial sayings as "a pig in a poke," and possibly in the poke-bonnet, the coal-scuttle bonnet fashionable during the first part of the 19th century, and now worn by the female members of the Salvation Army. More probably the name of the bonnet is connected with poke, to thrust forward, dig. The origin of this is obscure. Dutch has poken, pook, a dagger; Swedish has påk, a stick.
Historically, the term pocket referred to: