\ ə-ˈgäg How to pronounce agog (audio) \

Definition of agog

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : full of intense interest or excitement : eager "… That was the year the Twilight movie was going to come out, and the kids were agog with all things vampire. …"— Shelley Dorrill "… There goes Mrs. Tony now, all agog to spread such a delectable bit of gossip."— Lucy Maud Montgomery
2a : wide open : agape His talent [as a painter] is so enormous that you look at his surfaces with your mouth agog at the near-impossibility of it all.— Murray Whyte
b : full of wonder or surprise : astonished Jones … fired a strike to a waiting receiver that left his coaches agog.— MK Bower
3a : full of lively activity : bustling In the evenings … the streets … were agog with life.— Meridel Le Sueur
b : abundantly filled : replete His lyrics are agog with images that manage to be poetic and earthy at the same time …— Daisann MeLane



Definition of agog (Entry 2 of 2)

: in an excited or astonished manner … he posed for photographs with rugby fans of all ages, before playing with the 39 youths who were staring agog at their idol.New Ross (Ireland) Echo

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Synonyms for agog

Synonyms: Adjective

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Did You Know?

English speakers have been clamoring over the word agog for over 450 years; it derives from the Middle French phrase en gogues, meaning "in a state of mirth." The "-gog" part of the word might make one wonder if "agog" has a connection to the verb goggle, meaning "to stare with wide or protuberant eyes, as in the manner of one who is intensely excited about something." That word actually has a different origin: the Middle English gogelen, meaning "to squint." In many instances, "agog" is followed by a preposition, such as "over" or "about."

Examples of agog in a Sentence

Adjective The news has chemists agog. Her supporters were agog at the idea. The town is agog over the plan.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The New York Times did a fascinating short video interviewing young people from Estonia, Britain, Australia, South Africa and elsewhere who were agog at the multitude of different state rules for voter registration. Trudy Rubin, Star Tribune, "How the world views the U.S. election: Not pretty," 5 Nov. 2020 Does the American public, war-weary and agog over celebrities and fluff, even care about suffering in the Middle East? Julia M. Klein, Philly.com, "Bristol Riversides' 'Time Stands Still': Elegant look at love and war," 27 Jan. 2018 Chances are the national events of recent weeks have left you somewhere on the spectrum from despairing to agog to pleased as punch, and at the very least weary of all that the past year’s political campaigning has drummed up and drawn out. Cara Buckley, New York Times, "Oscars 2017: Presidential Politics and Hollywood’s Big Races," 28 Nov. 2016

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'agog.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of agog


1664, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1663, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for agog


probably borrowed from Middle French en gogues "in good humor, mirthful," from en "in" + gogues, plural of gogue "good humor, joking, pleasantry, mockery," going back to a Gallo-Romance expressive base *gog-

Note: Though Middle French en gogues is phonetically a plausible source of agog, the semantic link is not entirely clear. English examples from the 16th and 17th centuries are all for set agog, "to excite, stimulate, make eager," though this is not at all the sense of en gogues, and there is no comparable French mettre en gogues in any sense.

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Cite this Entry

“Agog.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/agog. Accessed 22 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for agog

\ ə-ˈgäg How to pronounce agog (audio) \

Kids Definition of agog

: full of excitement The children were all agog over their new toys.

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Nglish: Translation of agog for Spanish Speakers

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