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  1. the act of a person who pugs.
  2. coarse mortar or the like for deadening sound.

Origin of pugging

First recorded in 1815–25; pug2 + -ing1


verb (used with object), pugged, pug·ging.
  1. to knead (clay or the like) with water to make it plastic, as for brickmaking.
  2. to fill or stop with clay or the like.
  3. to pack or cover with mortar or the like, as to deaden sound.
  4. to mix with water so as to form a paste.

Origin of pug2

First recorded in 1800–10; origin uncertain


  1. Also called pugmark. a footprint, especially of a game animal.
verb (used with object), pugged, pug·ging.
  1. to track (especially game) by following footprints or another spoor.

Origin of pug4

First recorded in 1860–65, pug is from the Hindi word pag footprint
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for pugging

Historical Examples

  • Finished the hut, pugging it at the ends, and making the roof better.

    Explorations in Australia

    John Forrest

  • Enamelled iron sheets are screwed to the ceiling joists in the hot rooms, and pugging placed over.

    The Turkish Bath

    Robert Owen Allsop

  • I came to such a spot, and it was very dark, and the tantalising odour "set my pugging tooth on edge."

    In Pastures Green

    Peter McArthur

  • When cracks appear or96 joints open, they should be stopped with a pugging of fire clay and grog.

  • Where a shelf or prop rocks insecurely, a small wad of pugging (grog and clay) will give a steady bearing.

British Dictionary definitions for pugging


  1. material such as clay, mortar, sawdust, sand, etc, inserted between wooden flooring and ceiling to reduce the transmission of soundAlso called: pug


  1. Also called: carlin a small compact breed of dog with a smooth coat, lightly curled tail, and a short wrinkled nose
  2. any of several small geometrid moths, mostly of the genus Eupithecia, with slim forewings held outstretched at rest
Derived Formspuggish, adjective

Word Origin

C16: of uncertain origin


verb pugs, pugging or pugged (tr)
  1. to mix or knead (clay) with water to form a malleable mass or paste, often in a pug mill
  2. to fill or stop with clay or a similar substance
  3. (of cattle) to trample (the ground) into consolidated mud

Word Origin

C19: of uncertain origin


  1. a slang name for boxer (def. 1)

Word Origin

C20: shortened from pugilist
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

Word Origin and History for pugging



1560s, general term of endearment (also puggy), probably related to puck (n.2); one of the earliest senses is "sprite, imp" (1610s). The sense of "miniature dog" is from 1749 (pug-dog); that of "monkey" is 1660s. The word at various times meant "a bargeman" (1590s), "a harlot" (c.1600), and "an upper servant in a great house" (1847).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper