pi·geon·hole / ˈpijənˌhōl/ • n. a small recess for a domestic pigeon to nest in. ∎ a small compartment, open at the front and forming part of a set, where letters or messages may be left for someone. ∎ a similar compartment built into a desk for keeping documents in. ∎ fig. a category to which someone or something is assigned: people identified me with a homely farmer's wife and I was never allowed to escape from that pigeonhole.• v. [tr.] deposit (a document) into a pigeonhole: he pigeonholed his charts and notes. ∎ assign to a particular category or class, esp. in a manner that is too rigid or exclusive: a tendency to pigeonhole him as a photographer and neglect his work in sculpture and painting. ∎ put aside for future consideration: she pigeonholed her worry about him.