1. a small spray of some plant with its leaves, flowers, etc.
  2. an ornament having the form of such a spray.
  3. a shoot, twig, or small branch.
  4. Facetious. a scion, offspring, or heir of a family, class, etc.
  5. a youth or young fellow.
  6. glazier's point.
  7. a headless brad.
  8. Metallurgy.
    1. a small peg for reinforcing the walls of a mold.
    2. a metal insert, used to chill certain portions of cast metal, that becomes an integral part of the finished casting.
verb (used with object), sprigged, sprig·ging.
  1. to mark or decorate (fabrics, pottery, etc.) with a design of sprigs.
  2. to fasten with brads.
  3. Horticulture. to propagate a plant, especially grass, by planting individual stolons.
  4. Metallurgy. to reinforce the walls of (a mold) with sprigs.
  5. to remove a sprig or sprigs from (a plant).

Origin of sprig

1300–50; Middle English sprigge (noun); origin uncertain; sense “peg” perhaps of distinct orig.; cf. sprag1, spray2
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for sprigged

Historical Examples of sprigged

British Dictionary definitions for sprigged


  1. a shoot, twig, or sprout of a tree, shrub, etc; spray
  2. an ornamental device resembling a spray of leaves or flowers
  3. a small wire nail without a head
  4. informal, rare a youth
  5. informal, rare a person considered as the descendant of an established family, social class, etc
  6. NZ another name for stud 1 (def. 7)
verb sprigs, sprigging or sprigged (tr)
  1. to fasten or secure with sprigs
  2. to ornament (fabric, wallpaper, etc) with a design of sprigs
  3. to make sprays from (twigs and branches)
Derived Formssprigger, nounspriggy, adjective

Word Origin for sprig

C15: probably of Germanic origin; compare Low German sprick, Swedish sprygg
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 sprigged



c.1400, "shoot, twig or spray of a plant, shrub," probably from Old English spræc "shoot, twig," of obscure origin.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper