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

Definition of agog

: full of intense interest or excitement : eager kids all agog over new toys

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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

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 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.

First Known Use of agog

1664, 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 11 Aug. 2020.

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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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More from Merriam-Webster on agog

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for agog

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with agog

Spanish Central: Translation of agog

Nglish: Translation of agog for Spanish Speakers

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