hag

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See also: håg, hág, Hag, and Hag.

English[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English hagge, hegge (demon, old woman), shortening of Old English hægtesse, hægtes (harpy, witch), from Proto-Germanic *hagatusjǭ (compare Saterland Frisian Häkse (witch), Dutch heks, German Hexe (witch)), compounds of (1) *hagaz (able, skilled) (compare Old Norse hagr (handy, skillful), Middle High German behac (pleasurable)), from Proto-Indo-European *ḱak- (compare Sanskrit शक्नोति (śaknóti, he can)),[1] and (2) *tusjǭ (witch) (compare dialectal Norwegian tysja (fairy, she-elf)).[2]

Noun[edit]

hag (plural hags)

  1. A witch, sorceress, or enchantress; a wizard.
    • 1565, Arthur Golding (tr.), The Fyrst Fower Bookes of P. Ouidius Nasos worke intitled Metamorphosis[1], London: William Seres, The Fovrthe Booke:
      And that olde hag that with a staffe his staggering lymbes dooth stay
  2. (pejorative) An ugly old woman.
  3. A fury; a she-monster.
    • 1646, Richard Crashaw, Steps to the Temple, “Sospetto D' Herode”, stanza 37:
      Fourth of the cursed knot of hags is she / Or rather all the other three in one; / Hell's shop of slaughter she does oversee, / And still assist the execution
  4. A hagfish; one of various eel-like fish of the family Myxinidae, allied to the lamprey, with a suctorial mouth, labial appendages, and a single pair of gill openings.
  5. A hagdon or shearwater; one of various sea birds of the genus Puffinus.
  6. (obsolete) An appearance of light and fire on a horse's mane or a man's hair.
    • 1656, Thomas White, Peripateticall Institutions[2], page 149:
      Flamma lambentes (or those we call Haggs) are made of Sweat or some other Vapour issuing out of the Head; a not-unusuall sight amongst us when we ride by night in the Summer time: They are extinguisht, like flames, by shaking the Horse Mains
  7. The fruit of the hagberry, Prunus padus.
Synonyms[edit]
Derived terms[edit]
Translations[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

Scots hag (to cut), from Old Norse hǫgg ‘cut, gap, breach’, derivative of hǫggva ‘to hack, hew’; compare English hew.

Noun[edit]

hag (plural hags)

  1. A small wood, or part of a wood or copse, which is marked off or enclosed for felling, or which has been felled.
    • 1845, Edward Fairfax (tr.), Godfrey of Bulloigne; or, The Recovery of Jerusalem: Done into English Heroical Verse[3], page 168:
      This said, he led me over hoults and hags; / Through thorns and bushes scant my legs I drew
  2. A quagmire; mossy ground where peat or turf has been cut.
    • 1662, Sir William Dugdale, The History of Imbanking and Drayning of Divers Fenns and Marshes[4], page 292:
      And they likewise ordained [] that all the warp should be thrown into the Common wayes, to fill up haggs and lakes, where need was, upon a great penalty, where it should ly neer the Common rode.

Etymology 3[edit]

From Proto-Germanic *hag(g)ōnan (compare obsolete Dutch hagen ‘to torment, agonize’, Norwegian haga ‘to tire, weaken’).[3]

Verb[edit]

hag (third-person singular simple present hags, present participle hagging, simple past and past participle hagged)

  1. (transitive) To harass; to weary with vexation.
    • 1692, Roger L'Estrange (tr.), Fables of Aesop and Other Eminent Mythologists: with Morals and Reflexions[5], page 149:
      How are Superstitious Men Hagg'd Out of their Wits and Senses, with the Fancy of Omens, Forebodings, Old Wives Tales, and Visions

References[edit]

  1. ^ Vladimir Orel, A Handbook of Germanic Etymology, s.v. “*xaʒaz” (Leiden: Brill, 2003), 149-50.
  2. ^ E. C. Polomé, “Althochdeutsch hag(a)zussa ‘Hexe’: Versuch einer neuen Etymologie”, in: R. Bergmann, ed., Althochdeutsch 2 (Wörter und Namen. Forschungsgeschichte) (1987), 1107-12.
  3. ^ Guus Kroonen, Etymological Dictionary of Proto-Germanic, s.v. “*hagla-” (Leiden: Brill, 2013), 199.

External links[edit]

Anagrams[edit]


Breton[edit]

Conjunction[edit]

hag

  1. and

Synonyms[edit]

  • (before consonants or /j/) ha

Cornish[edit]

Conjunction[edit]

hag

  1. and

Synonyms[edit]

  • (before consonants) ha

Danish[edit]

Verb[edit]

hag

  1. imperative of hage

Westrobothnian[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

hag n (definite hagjä)

  1. simple fence or enclosure made of sticks, twigs or bushes
  2. (hunting) such a construction used for hunting, with openings with snares and traps where birds and hares are caught

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]