a. A container of flexible material, such as paper, plastic, or leather, that is used for carrying or storing items.
b. A handbag; a purse.
c. A piece of hand luggage, such as a suitcase or satchel.
d. A pouchlike or sagging organ or part of the body, such as a cow's udder.
2. An object that resembles a pouch.
3. Nautical The sagging or bulging part of a sail.
4. The amount that a bag can hold.
5. An amount of game taken or legally permitted to be taken.
6. Baseball A base.
7. Slang An area of interest or skill: Cooking is not my bag.
8. Slang A woman considered ugly or unkempt.
v. bagged, bag·ging, bags
1. To put into a bag: bag groceries.
2. To cause to bulge like a pouch.
3. To capture or kill as game: bagged six grouse.
a. To gain; acquire: He bagged a profit from the sale.
b. To capture or arrest: was bagged for trespassing.
c. To accomplish or achieve: bagged a birdie with a long putt.
a. To fail to attend purposely; skip: bagged classes for the day and went to the beach.
b. To stop doing or considering; abandon: bagged the idea and started from scratch.
c. To terminate the employment of.
1. To pack items in a bag.
2. To hang loosely: The pants bag at the knees.
3. To swell out; bulge.
To quit or abandon an activity.
bag and baggage
1. With all one's belongings.
2. To a complete degree; entirely.
bag it Slang
1. To cease participating in an activity: Finally in disgust I told my debating opponent to bag it.
2. To bring along one's lunch, as in a paper bag: I don't like cafeteria food, so I always bag it.
in the bag
Assured of a successful outcome; virtually accomplished or won.
[Middle English bagge, from Old Norse baggi.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.