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[bog, bawg] /bɒg, bɔg/
wet, spongy ground with soil composed mainly of decayed vegetable matter.
an area or stretch of such ground.
verb (used with or without object), bogged, bogging.
to sink in or as if in a bog (often followed by down):
We were bogged down by overwork.
Verb phrases
bog in, Australian Slang. to eat heartily and ravenously.
Origin of bog1
1495-1505; < Irish or Scots Gaelic bogach soft ground (bog soft + -ach noun suffix); (def 4) perhaps a different word
Related forms
boggish, adjective


[bog, bawg] /bɒg, bɔg/
noun, Usually, bogs, British Slang.
a lavatory; bathroom.
1780-90; probably shortening of bog-house; compare bog to defecate, boggard (16th century) privy, of obscure origin Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for bog
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Then after the bog and the potatoes, came funerals and holidays innumerable.

  • I did not hear a word from her about the bog of Ballynascraw.

  • There was no light in the cabin, which was a solitary one, standing on the edge of a bog.

  • This is the bog of Allen you're travelling now, and they tell there's not the like of it in the three kingdoms.'

    Lord Kilgobbin Charles Lever
  • It's what the newspapers will call a great day for the bog of Allen.

    Lord Kilgobbin Charles Lever
  • He recalled the scene in the bog, Colonel John's courage, and his thought for his servant.

    The Wild Geese Stanley John Weyman
  • But Rita shuddered again, and begged that she might never hear of the bog again.

    Three Margarets Laura E. Richards
British Dictionary definitions for bog


wet spongy ground consisting of decomposing vegetation, which ultimately forms peat
an area of such ground
a place or thing that prevents or slows progress or improvement
a slang word for lavatory (sense 1)
(Austral, slang) the act or an instance of defecating
See also bog down, bog in, bog off
Derived Forms
boggy, adjective
bogginess, noun
Word Origin
C13: from Gaelic bogach swamp, from bog soft
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for bog

c.1500, from Gaelic and Irish bogach "bog," from adjective bog "soft, moist," from PIE *bhugh-, from root *bheugh- "to bend" (see bow (v.)). Bog-trotter applied to the wild Irish from 1670s.


"to sink (something or someone) in a bog," c.1600, from bog (n.). Intransitive use from c.1800. Related: Bogged; bogging.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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bog in Science
An area of wet, spongy ground consisting mainly of decayed or decaying peat moss (sphagnum) and other vegetation. Bogs form as the dead vegetation sinks to the bottom of a lake or pond, where it decays slowly to form peat. Peat bogs are important to global ecology, since the undecayed peat moss stores large amounts of carbon that would otherwise be released back into the atmosphere. Global warming may accelerate decay in peat bogs and release more carbon dioxide, which in turn may cause further warming.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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