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See also: zeď, źěd, žeđ, and Zed



From Middle English zed, zedde, zede, from Old French zede, from Late Latin zeta, from Ancient Greek ζῆτα (zêta). Letter had rare nonstandard usage in Old English, such as in bezt, where it represented "ts" (compare the German pronunciation of Z). For the sleep sense, see zzz. The zombie sense comes from the initial letter.


  • IPA(key): /zɛd/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɛd


zed (plural zeds) (chiefly Commonwealth)

  1. The name of the Latin-script letter Z.
  2. (in combination) Something Z-shaped.
  3. (colloquial, usually in the plural) Sleep.
    I'm going to go get some zeds.
  4. (slang) A zombie.
    A horde of zeds began to shuffle into the shopping mall.


  • (all): zee (US, Newfoundland)
  • (letter): izzard (Scotland)
  • (sleep): zee (Canada) (more common)


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zed (third-person singular simple present zeds, present participle zedding, simple past and past participle zedded) (chiefly Britain, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Ireland, South Africa)

  1. (intransitive, informal) To sleep or nap. (Compare zzz, catch some z's.)
    • 1991, Jim Cartwright, Bed:
      Zedding hogs. Sleep sippers and spitters. Look at 'em cooking in their own snoring heat. One nose after another.
    • 1992, David Robins, Tarnished vision: crime and conflict in the inner city:
      I guess I must have zedded, for I find a police officer, the same one that nicked me, shaking me.
    • 2007, Polly Williams, The Yummy Mummy:
      "Zedding away." "God, I was having the most awful dream. That you'd got lost by the sea and I couldn't find you and something was chasing me, me and Evie."
  2. (intransitive, rare) To zigzag; to move with sharp alternating turns.
    • 1931, Reginald Rankin, The Collected Works of Lt. Colonel Sir Reginald Rankin
      We were zedding hell-bells up the hill towards Cervione, with a bank of road metal and a precipice on our left...
    • 1994, Tibor Fischer, The thought gang:
      Licking his lips, his hand zedded on my thigh and he commented, penetratingly, that it wasn't pussy, but that driving the unmade road wasn't at all bad.

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