Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary


noun \ˈbag also ˈbāg\

Simple Definition of bag

  • : a container made of thin material (such as paper, plastic, or cloth) that opens at the top and is used for holding or carrying things

  • : a soft container carried by a woman and used to hold money and other small things (such as keys or makeup)

  • : a container used for carrying personal things (such as clothes) when you are going somewhere

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of bag

  1. 1 :  a usually flexible container that may be closed for holding, storing, or carrying something: as a :  purse; especially :  handbag b :  a bag for game c :  suitcase

  2. 2 :  something resembling a bag: as a (1) :  a pouched or pendulous bodily part or organ; especially :  udder (2) :  a puffy or sagging protuberance of flabby skin b :  a puffed-out sag or bulge in cloth c :  a square white stuffed canvas bag used to mark a base in baseball

  3. 3 :  the amount contained in a bag

  4. 4 a :  a quantity of game taken; also :  the maximum legal quantity of game b :  an assortment or collection especially of nonmaterial things <a bag of tricks>

  5. 5 :  an unattractive woman

  6. 6 :  something one likes or does regularly or well; also :  one's characteristic way of doing things

in the bag
  1. 1 :  sure, certain <her nomination was in the bag>; also :  assured of a successful conclusion :  sewn up <have the game in the bag>

  2. 2 slang :  drunk 1a

Examples of bag in a sentence

  1. She packed her lunch in a paper bag.

  2. She put the pencil in her bag.

  3. a tired old man with bags under his eyes

Origin of bag

Middle English bagge, from Old Norse baggi

First Known Use: 13th century




Simple Definition of bag

  • : to put (something) into a bag

  • : to kill or catch (an animal) while hunting, fishing, etc.

  • : to get (something desired)

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of bag


  1. intransitive verb
  2. 1 :  to swell out :  bulge

  3. 2 :  to hang loosely

  4. transitive verb
  5. 1 :  to cause to swell

  6. 2 :  to put into a bag

  7. 3 a :  to take (animals) as game b :  to get possession of especially by strategy or stealth c :  capture, seize d :  to shoot down :  destroy

  8. 4 :  to achieve in or as if in competition :  win <bag a play-off berth>

  9. 5 :  to give up, forgo, or abandon especially for something more desirable or attainable <decided to bag her job and move to the country> —often used with it

bagger noun

Examples of bag in a sentence

  1. He got a job bagging groceries.

  2. The hunters bagged five deer altogether.

  3. We bagged 10 fish today.

  4. She's expected to bag the award for the team's most valuable player.

  5. I bagged the last seat so everyone else had to stand.

15th Century

First Known Use of bag

15th century

Synonym Discussion of bag

catch, capture, trap, snare, entrap, ensnare, bag mean to come to possess or control by or as if by seizing. catch implies the seizing of something in motion or in flight or in hiding <caught the dog as it ran by>. capture suggests taking by overcoming resistance or difficulty <capture an enemy stronghold>. trap, snare, entrap, ensnare imply seizing by some device that holds the one caught at the mercy of the captor. trap and snare apply more commonly to physical seizing <trap animals> <snared butterflies with a net>. entrap and ensnare more often are figurative <entrapped the witness with a trick question> <a sting operation that ensnared burglars>. bag implies shooting down a fleeing or distant prey <bagged a brace of pheasants>.

Rhymes with bag



Definition of BAg

  1. bachelor of agriculture

BAG Defined for Kids



noun \ˈbag\

Definition of bag for Students

  1. 1 :  a container made of flexible material (as paper or plastic)

  2. 2 :  1purse 1, handbag

  3. 3 :  suitcase




Definition of bag for Students


  1. 1 :  to swell out <Her clothes bagged around her.>

  2. 2 :  to put into a bag <bagging groceries>

  3. 3 :  to kill or capture in hunting <bag a deer>

Medical Dictionary



noun \ˈbag\

Medical Definition of bag

  1. 1:  a pouched or pendulous bodily part or organ; especially :  udder

  2. 2:  a puffy or sagging protuberance of flabby skin <an aging face with bags below the eyes>



transitive verb

Medical Definition of bag

bagged; bagging

  1. :  to ventilate the lungs of (a patient) using a hand-squeezed bag attached to a face mask <I asked the respiratory therapist to continue bagging and assisting the patient while I sought the family's permission not to proceed with intubation.—Malinda H. Bell, The Journal of the American Medical Association, 21 June 2000>

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up bag? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to manage or play awkwardly

Get Word of the Day daily email!


Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!


Which of these is a synonym of nonplus?

soothe perplex reduce disapprove
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.