Ted tugged at the brass buttons of her red, wool-crepe dress.
As I was coming out, my sister [Valerie] tugged on me and said, ‘That’s the boy who kicked me off my bicycle.
She tugged on the black rope that wrapped around his thighs and torso, her leather gloves creaking with each adjustment.
The handcuffs required her to reach with both hands as she tugged up the left leg of her stockings.
Then the girl reached into her mountain trousers and tugged at her clothing.
Priscilla, on her knees under the foresail, tugged at the anchor rope.
I felt the rope cutting my waist as Sim jerked and tugged at it with all his strength.
It was a collar and elbow hold; they tugged, strained, now pushing, now pulling.
An arm reached out to Winfree's lapel and tugged him back from the car.
So to-night, with hopes high and nerves all a-tingle, she tugged at the line.
c.1500, from tug (v.). Meaning "small steamer used to tow other vessels" is recorded from 1817. Phrase tug of war (1670s) was originally figurative, "the decisive contest, the real struggle."