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Variant of Middle English quabbe (a marsh, bog), from Old English cwabba (shake, tremble like something soft and flabby). Cognate with Dutch kwab.


quag (plural quags)

  1. (obsolete) quagmire; marsh; bog.
    • 1771 December 16, Walker, John, Account of the Irruption of Solway Moss:
      If a person ventures on one of these quags, it bends in waves under his feet; and if the surface breaks, he is in danger of sinking to the bottom.
    • 1784, Cowper, William, Tirocinium; or, a Review of Schools:
      Crooked or straight, through quags or thorny dells