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dialectal, England


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variants or aargh or aaargh
used typically to express frustration, disappointment, anguish, or pain
I was in Hawaii and I flipped on the TV and it was on. I was like, "Argh, I can't get away from it."Mariska Hargitay, quoted in Newsweek, 5 Nov. 2007
"Aaargh!" said Ron as another twisted limb punched a large dent into his door …J. K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, 1999
… the dog wants to be walked, the bills need to be paid and 346 emails have to be answered. Aaargh!Eleanor Langston, Self, April 2009
I'm a little more beat up this year … I'll tell you when it feels like it, when you go to bed. When you wake up you go, "Aargh."Pedro Martinez, quoted in Daily News (New York), 24 Aug. 2005

Word History



Middle English, cowardly, lazy, slow, wretched, from Old English earg; akin to Old Frisian erg evil, bad, Old High German arg, arag cowardly, worthless, stingy, Old Norse argr evil, homosexual, effeminate, Avestan ərəgant- evil, repulsive, Lithuanian aržus sensual, lustful

First Known Use


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above


1800, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of argh was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near argh

Cite this Entry

“Argh.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 May. 2024.

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