lag

1
[ lag ]
/ læg /
See synonyms for: lag / lagged / lagging on Thesaurus.com

verb (used without object), lagged, lag·ging.

verb (used with object), lagged, lag·ging.

to fail to keep up with: The industry still lags the national economy.
Obsolete. to cause to lag.

noun

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Origin of lag

1
First recorded in 1500–50; origin uncertain, probably from Scandinavian: compare Middle Danish lakke, Norwegian lagga “to go slowly”

Definition for lag (2 of 3)

lag2
[ lag ]
/ læg /
Chiefly British Slang.

verb (used with object), lagged, lag·ging.

to send to penal servitude; imprison

noun

a convict or ex-convict.
a period or term of penal servitude; prison sentence.

Origin of lag

2
First recorded in 1565–75; origin uncertain

Definition for lag (3 of 3)

lag3
[ lag ]
/ læg /

noun

one of the staves or strips that form the periphery of a wooden drum, the casing of a steam cylinder, or the like.
Masonry. a crosspiece between ribs in a centering.

verb (used with object), lagged, lag·ging.

to line or cover (an excavation) with lagging.
to cover with insulation, as a steam boiler, to prevent radiation of heat.

Origin of lag

3
First recorded in 1655–60; from Scandinavian; compare Old Norse lǫgg “rim of a barrel,” Swedish lagg “stave”
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for lag

British Dictionary definitions for lag (1 of 3)

lag1
/ (læɡ) /

verb lags, lagging or lagged (intr)

(often foll by behind) to hang (back) or fall (behind) in movement, progress, development, etc
to fall away in strength or intensity
to determine an order of play in certain games, as by rolling marbles towards a line or, in billiards, hitting cue balls up the table against the top cushion in an attempt to bring them back close to the headrail

noun

the act or state of slowing down or falling behind
the interval of time between two events, esp between an action and its effect
an act of lagging in a game, such as billiards

Word Origin for lag

C16: of obscure origin

British Dictionary definitions for lag (2 of 3)

lag2
/ (læɡ) slang /

noun

a convict or ex-convict (esp in the phrase old lag)
a term of imprisonment

verb lags, lagging or lagged

(tr) to arrest or put in prison

Word Origin for lag

C19: of unknown origin

British Dictionary definitions for lag (3 of 3)

lag3
/ (læɡ) /

verb lags, lagging or lagged

(tr) to cover (a pipe, cylinder, etc) with lagging to prevent loss of heat

noun

the insulating casing of a steam cylinder, boiler, etc; lagging
a stave or lath

Word Origin for lag

C17: of Scandinavian origin; related to Swedish lagg stave
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