Origin of ragged

First recorded in 1250–1300, ragged is from the Middle English word ragget. See rag1, -ed3
Related formsrag·ged·ly, adverbrag·ged·ness, noun

Synonyms for ragged

1. shabby, poor. 2. shredded, rent.

Antonyms for ragged

1. neat.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for raggedly

Historical Examples of raggedly

  • 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

British Dictionary definitions for raggedly



(of clothes) worn to rags; tattered
(of a person) dressed in shabby tattered clothes
having a neglected or unkempt appearanceragged weeds
having a loose, rough, or uneven surface or edge; jagged
uneven or irregulara ragged beat; a ragged shout
Derived Formsraggedly, adverbraggedness, noun

Word Origin for ragged

C13: probably from ragge rag 1
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

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

Idioms and Phrases with raggedly


see run one ragged.

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