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[rag-id] /ˈræg ɪd/
clothed in tattered garments:
a ragged old man.
torn or worn to rags; tattered:
ragged clothing.
shaggy, as an animal, its coat, etc.
having loose or hanging shreds or fragmentary bits:
a ragged wound.
full of rough or sharp projections; jagged:
ragged stones.
in a wild or neglected state:
a ragged garden.
rough, imperfect, or faulty:
a ragged piece of work.
harsh, as sound, the voice, etc.
(of a column of type) set or printed with one side unjustified; either flush left with the right side unjustified (ragged right) or flush right with the left side unjustified (ragged left)
Origin of ragged
First recorded in 1250-1300, ragged is from the Middle English word ragget. See rag1, -ed3
Related forms
raggedly, adverb
raggedness, noun
1. shabby, poor. 2. shredded, rent.
1. neat. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for raggedly
Historical Examples
  • Ayaw tagaktagaka (itagaktagak), Recite it together in unison, not raggedly.

  • But it was not this alone that made his breath come short and raggedly.

    The Yukon Trail

    William MacLeod Raine
  • They were determined men, raggedly clothed and bearded; incurious of gaze and uncommunicative of speech—but armed and purposeful.

    When 'Bear Cat' Went Dry Charles Neville Buck
  • The German line emerged from the smoke, raggedly but yet solidly enough to overwhelm the weakened defense.

    Grapes of wrath Boyd Cable
  • From his raggedly whiskered lips burst a growl and a yawp which, too late, he regretted.

    The Tyranny of Weakness Charles Neville Buck
  • He looked up at the spreading plane that tore off raggedly against the night.

    The Jewels of Aptor Samuel R. Delany
  • His short beard was raggedly trimmed; his grizzled hair began to show the scalp.

    In the Year of Jubilee George Gissing
  • Over the island, and raggedly clasping its sides, hung a cloud, the only one visible in the sky.

    The Mystery Stewart Edward White and Samuel Hopkins Adams
  • He came into town unshorn, wild-looking, often raggedly clad, yet always with the same wistful hunger in his eyes.

    The Trail of '98

    Robert W. Service
  • A smooth-faced, bald-headed, and raggedly dressed Turk thrust his head and shoulders in and grimaced at them.

    On the Road to Bagdad F. S. Brereton
British Dictionary definitions for raggedly


(of clothes) worn to rags; tattered
(of a person) dressed in shabby tattered clothes
having a neglected or unkempt appearance: ragged weeds
having a loose, rough, or uneven surface or edge; jagged
uneven or irregular: a ragged beat, a ragged shout
Derived Forms
raggedly, adverb
raggedness, noun
Word Origin
C13: probably from raggerag1
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 raggedly



"rough, shaggy," c.1300, past participle adjective as though from a verb form of rag (n.). Cf. Latin pannosus "ragged, wrinkly," from pannus "piece of cloth." But the word might reflect a broader, older meaning; perhaps from or reinforced by Old Norse raggaðr "shaggy," via Old English raggig "shaggy, bristly, rough" (which, Barnhart writes, "was almost surely developed from Scandinavian"). Of clothes, early 14c.; of persons, late 14c. To run (someone) ragged is from 1915. Related: Raggedly; raggedness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for raggedly


Related Terms

run someone ragged

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with raggedly


The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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