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[wig-ing] /ˈwɪg ɪŋ/
noun, British Informal.
a scolding or reproof.
Origin of wigging
First recorded in 1805-15; wig + -ing1


[wig] /wɪg/
an artificial covering of hair for all or most of the head, of either synthetic or natural hair, worn to be stylish or more attractive.
a similar head covering, worn in one's official capacity, as part of a costume, disguise, etc.
a toupee or hairpiece.
British Informal. a wigging.
verb (used with object), wigged, wigging.
to furnish with a wig.
British Informal. to reprimand or reprove severely; scold.
Verb phrases
wig out, Slang.
  1. to be intoxicated with narcotic drugs.
  2. to make or become wildly excited or enthusiastic:
    She wigs out over every rock star that comes along.
flip one's wig, Slang. lid (def 8).
First recorded in 1665-75; short for periwig
Related forms
wigless, adjective
wiglike, adjective
unwig, verb (used with object), unwigged, unwigging. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for wigging
Historical Examples
  • "He has been getting a wigging and no mistake," one said to another.

    At Aboukir and Acre George Alfred Henty
  • Just now she was getting rather a wigging, but she was remarkably calm.

    Long Live the King Mary Roberts Rinehart
  • “By Jupiter, what a wigging I shall get,” whispered Dicky, in a terrible funk.

    Salt Water W. H. G. Kingston
  • Yes; and the Major had you up to give you a wigging, as you call it, only yesterday.

    Trapped by Malays George Manville Fenn
  • As soon as I glanced at it I saw that I was in for a wigging.

    Marguerite Anatole France
  • To-day Ive had a wigging for you before the whole of my company.

    The Duel A. I. Kuprin
  • The pal of the red-headed lad is going to get a wigging now.

  • If you ever needed a wigging or any other punishment Id give it to you.

    The Arrival of Jimpson Ralph Henry Barbour
  • Either we won't be alive to bear the wigging, or else we'll be tails up.

  • It saved me a wigging from Mother, for she always wants us all to keep together.

    A Young Girl's Diary An Anonymous Young Girl
British Dictionary definitions for wigging


(Brit, slang) a rebuke or reprimand
(NZ) the shearing of wool from the head of a sheep


an artificial head of hair, either human or synthetic, worn to disguise baldness, as part of a theatrical or ceremonial dress, as a disguise, or for adornment
verb (transitive) wigs, wigging, wigged
(obsolete) to furnish with a wig
(Brit, slang) to berate severely
See also wig out
Derived Forms
wigged, adjective
wigless, adjective
wiglike, adjective
Word Origin
C17: shortened from periwig
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 wigging



1670s, shortened form of periwig. Meaning "person who wears a wig (professionally)" is from 1828. The verb meaning "to behave hysterically" (usually with out) is attested from 1955, from notion in to flip one's wig. Cf. dash my wig!, a former mild imprecation (1797), also wigs on the green (1856), Irish colloquial for "a fight or rumble" (because wigs are likely to get detached from owners in such an event).

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



Crazed; out of control: wigging over the big spider



Excellent; wonderful; great, neat: a real wig rock trio (1960s+ Teenagers)


  1. One's head; one's mind (1930s+ Jive talk)
  2. A cool jazz musician (1950s+ Jazz musicians)


  1. To talk, esp casually and freely; rap: We stood around wigging (1930s+ Jive talk)
  2. To annoy someone; bug: She ordered me to stop wigging her (1930s+ Jive talk)
  3. To play cool or progressive jazz (1950s+ Jazz musicians)
  4. To behave more or less hysterically; flip, freak out, wig out: I realized my goddamn father wasn't there, again, and I wigged (1950s+ Cool talk)
  5. To be happy and in harmony; dig (1950s+ Cool talk)

Related Terms

blow one's top, flip one's lid

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 wigging


In addition to the idiom beginning with wig also see: flip one's lid (wig)
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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