1 of 3

noun (1)

: a worthless person : rascal
: a small or annoying thing
put down my keys and now I can't find the buggers


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bug·​ger ˈbə-gər How to pronounce bugger (audio)
buggered; buggering; buggers

transitive verb

usually vulgar : to commit sodomy with
: damn
: to put into disorder : bungle, botch
often used with up


3 of 3

noun (2)

bug·​ger ˈbə-gər How to pronounce bugger (audio)
: a person who plants electronic bugs

Examples of bugger in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
How To Clean Strawberries How To Soak Strawberries In Salt Water These little buggers are really hard to spot, and that's where a salt soak comes in. Melissa Locker, Southern Living, 3 Apr. 2024 Give yourself a break from the buzzing buggers with a host of new products from the always reliable Avon Skin So Soft Bug Guard formulas. Miami Staff, Miami Herald, 30 Jan. 2024 Not just any pillow—this cheeky bugger’s a straight-up ‘f—k you’ to stress, exhaustion, and that godforsaken muscle knot playing hide and seek in your neck. Cristian Esteban, Rolling Stone, 31 Oct. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'bugger.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Noun (1)

Middle English bougre heretic, from Anglo-French bugre, from Medieval Latin Bulgarus, literally, Bulgarian; from the association of Bulgaria with the Bogomils, who were accused of sodomy

First Known Use

Noun (1)

1540, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1560, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (2)

1955, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of bugger was in 1540

Dictionary Entries Near bugger

Cite this Entry

“Bugger.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/bugger. Accessed 17 Apr. 2024.

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