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[sluhg] /slʌg/
any of various snaillike terrestrial gastropods having no shell or only a rudimentary one, feeding on plants and a pest of leafy garden crops.
a nudibranch.
a metal disk used as a coin or token, generally counterfeit.
a piece of lead or other metal for firing from a gun.
any heavy piece of crude metal.
  1. a thick strip of type metal less than type-high.
  2. such a strip containing a type-high number or other character for temporary use.
  3. a line of type in one piece, as produced by a Linotype.
Informal. a shot of liquor taken neat; belt.
Slang. a person who is lazy or slow-moving; sluggard.
a slow-moving animal, vehicle, or the like.
  1. Also called catchline. a short phrase or title used to indicate the story content of newspaper or magazine copy.
  2. the line of type carrying this information.
Metalworking. a small piece of metal ready for processing.
a gold coin of California, privately issued in 1849 and for some time after, worth 50 dollars.
Physics. a unit of mass, equivalent to approximately 32.2 pounds (15 kg) and having the property that a force of one pound acting upon a mass of this unit produces an acceleration of one foot per second per second.
an irregular projection or knob on the surface of yarn, usually produced by lint or by defects in weaving.
verb (used with object), slugged, slugging.
  1. to make (corrections) by replacing entire lines of type, especially as set by a Linotype.
  2. to check the lines of (typeset copy) against copy of the previous typesetting stage to ensure that no line has been omitted, especially before printing or plating.
Journalism. to furnish (copy) with a slug.
to interpolate pieces of metal into (a joint being welded).
Origin of slug1
late Middle English
1375-1425; late Middle English slugge sluggard < Scandinavian; compare Norwegian (dial.) sluggje heavy, slow person
Related forms
sluglike, adjective


[sluhg] /slʌg/ Informal.
verb (used with object), slugged, slugging.
to strike heavily; hit hard, especially with the fist.
to hit or drive (a baseball) very hard or a great distance.
verb (used without object), slugged, slugging.
to hit or be capable of hitting hard.
to trudge, fight, or push onward, as against obstacles or through mud or snow:
The infantry slugged up the hill and dug in.
a hard blow or hit, especially with a fist or baseball bat.
slug it out,
  1. to fight, especially with fists, until a decisive victory has been achieved.
  2. to succeed or survive by constant and intense struggle.
1820-30; orig. in phrase hit with a slug; see slug1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for slugged
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The men rushed and slugged and clinched and tugged, and when they fell, got up and went at it again.

    Sonnie-Boy's People James B. Connolly
  • "We might have the light that slugged us to thank for that," he said.

    The Winds of Time James H. Schmitz
  • He had struck Four-eyes squarely on the flat nose, and it felt as if he had slugged an anvil.

    Freudian Slip Franklin Abel
  • First, he went into the low-power room and slugged the man on duty.

    Unwise Child Gordon Randall Garrett
  • Scotty snapped on the light just as the man Rick had slugged staggered to his feet, blinking.

    The Caves of Fear John Blaine
  • He slugged his way free and fled to the safety of his stateroom.

    Loot of the Void Edwin K. Sloat
British Dictionary definitions for slugged


any of various terrestrial gastropod molluscs of the genera Limax, Arion, etc, in which the body is elongated and the shell is absent or very much reduced Compare sea slug related adjective limacine
any of various other invertebrates having a soft slimy body, esp the larvae of certain sawflies
(informal, mainly US & Canadian) a slow-moving or lazy person or animal
Word Origin
C15 (in the sense: a slow person or animal): probably of Scandinavian origin; compare Norwegian (dialect) sluggje


an fps unit of mass; the mass that will acquire an acceleration of 1 foot per second per second when acted upon by a force of 1 pound. 1 slug is approximately equal to 32.17 pounds
(metallurgy) a metal blank from which small forgings are worked
a bullet or pellet larger than a pellet of buckshot
(mainly US & Canadian) a metal token for use in slot machines, etc
  1. a thick strip of type metal that is less than type-high and is used for spacing
  2. a similar strip carrying a type-high letter, used as a temporary mark by compositors
  3. a metal strip containing a line of characters as produced by a linecaster
a draught of a drink, esp an alcoholic one
a magnetic core that is screwed into or out of an inductance coil to adjust the tuning of a radio frequency amplifier
Word Origin
C17 (bullet), C19 (printing): perhaps from slug1, with allusion to the shape of the animal


verb slugs, slugging, slugged
to hit very hard and solidly, as in boxing
(intransitive) (US & Canadian) to plod as if through snow
(transitive) (Austral & NZ, informal) to charge (someone) an exorbitant price
(informal) slug it out, to fight, compete, or struggle with fortitude
an act of slugging; heavy blow
(Austral & NZ, informal) an exorbitant charge or price
Word Origin
C19: perhaps from slug² (bullet)
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 slugged



"shell-less land snail," 1704, originally "lazy person" (early 15c.); related to sluggard.

"lead bit," 1620s, perhaps a special use of slug (n.1), perhaps on some supposed resemblance. Meaning "token or counterfeit coin" first recorded 1881; meaning "strong drink" first recorded 1756, perhaps from slang fire a slug "take a drink," though it also may be related to Irish slog "swallow." Journalism sense is from 1925, originally a short guideline for copy editors at the head of a story.

"a hard blow," 1830, dialectal, of uncertain origin; perhaps related to slaughter or perhaps a secondary form of slay.


"deliver a hard blow with the fist," 1862, from slug (n.3). Related: Slugged; slugging. Slugging-match is from 1878.

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



Drunk: I want you really slugged when we shoot the scene (1951+)

slug 1


  1. A bullet: Doctors said they're still unable to remove the slug (1622+)
  2. A dollar: do the job at 125 slugs a week (1887+)
  3. A drink of liquid, esp of whiskey; snort: ordering a slug of Old Stepmother (1762+)


(also slug down): The crowd cheered and jeered and slugged beers (1940s+)

[origin uncertain; perhaps fr the resemblance of a lump of metal to the snail-like creature the slug; the earliest attested US sensesare''goldnugget,lumpofcrudemetal'';thedrink and drinking senses appear to be derived fr phrases like fire a slug and cast a slug, ''take a drink of liquor,'' found as metaphors in late 18th-century British sources, and may be fr Irish slog, ''a drink, a swallow'']

slug 2


  1. To hit hard, esp with the fist; clobber: He tried to make peace, but he got slugged (1862+)
  2. To make or try for long base hits, esp regularly; go for the fences (1888+ Baseball)

Related Terms

put the slug on someone

[fr British dialect slog, probably ultimately fr Old English slagan, cognate with German schlagen]

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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