\ ˈdrag \

Definition of drag 

(Entry 1 of 3)

1 : something used to drag (see drag entry 2) with especially : a device for dragging under water to detect or obtain objects

2 : something that is dragged, pulled, or drawn along or over a surface: such as

a agriculture : harrow

b : a sledge (see sledge entry 3 sense 2) for conveying heavy bodies

c : conveyance

3a : the act or an instance of dragging or drawing: such as

(1) : a drawing along or over a surface with effort or pressure

(2) : motion effected with slowness or difficulty also : the condition of having or seeming to have such motion

(3) : a draw on a pipe, cigarette, or cigar took a drag on his cigar also : a draft (see draft entry 1 sense 2b) of liquid

b : a movement, inclination, or retardation caused by or as if by dragging the drag of his bottom lip

c slang : influence securing special favor : pull

4a : something that retards or impedes motion, action, or advancement

b(1) physics : the retarding force acting on a body (such as an airplane) moving through a fluid (such as air) parallel and opposite to the direction of motion

(2) mechanical engineering : friction (see friction sense 1b) between engine parts also : retardation due to friction

c : burden, encumbrance the drag of population growth on living standards

d : one that is boring or gets in the way of enjoyment thinks studying is a drag this sickly kid is going to be a social drag —Edmund Morris

5 hunting

a : an object drawn over the ground to leave a scented trail

b : a clog (see clog entry 1 sense 1a) fastened to a trap to prevent the escape of a trapped animal

6 : street, road the main drag

7a : entertainment in which performers dressed as members of the opposite sex caricature gender stereotypes through the use of often outrageous costumes and exaggerated mannerisms often used before another noun a drag show

b(1) : stereotypically gendered clothing or costume worn by someone of the opposite sex often used in the phrase in drag My kind of TV show featured cartoons, puppets or Milton Berle in drag. —Dennis Drabelle

(2) : costume What was perhaps most embarrassing about Cyrus' dismal gig was its cutesy toys—a giant teddy bear from which she popped to cavort with a dance troupe in fuzzy bear drag. —Camille Paglia especially : a costume used to impersonate a person or kind of person … Paul Newman and Robert Redford romping about in bad-guy drag like naughty Hardy Boys ain't my idea of a western. —Mark Goodman

8 sports : drag race


dragged; dragging

Definition of drag (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1a(1) : to draw or pull slowly or heavily : haul dragging a box down the hall

(2) : to cause to move with slowness or difficulty dragged myself up the stairs dragging his feet

(3) : to cause to trail (see trail entry 1 sense 1a) along a surface wandered off dragging the leash

b(1) : to bring by or as if by force or compulsion had to drag her husband to the opera

(2) : to extract by or as if by pulling drag the truth out of him

c : protract drag a story out

2a : to pass a drag over drag a field

b : to explore with a drag drag the pond for the drowning victim

c hunting and fishing : to catch with a dragnet (see dragnet sense 1)

3 baseball : to hit (a drag bunt) while moving toward first base

4 computers : to select and move (an item on a computer screen) by using a mouse, a touch screen, etc. drag the icon to the bottom row

intransitive verb

1 : to hang or lag behind Stop dragging and hurry up.

2 : to fish or search with a drag (see drag entry 1 sense 1)

3 : to trail along on the ground Your scarf is dragging.

4a : to move slowly because of fatigue was dragging after the long trip

b : to proceed or continue laboriously or tediously The lawsuit dragged on for years.

5 : draw sense 4a drag on a cigarette

6 : to make a plucking or pulling movement

7 sports : to participate in a drag race

drag one's feet or less commonly drag one's heels

: to act in a deliberately slow or dilatory manner



Definition of drag (Entry 3 of 3)

: of, being, involving, or intended for a person wearing clothing typical of the opposite sex : of, being, involving, or intended for a person in drag (see drag entry 1 sense 7b(1)) a drag ball

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Other words from drag


draggingly \ˈdra-giŋ-lē \ adverb

Examples of drag in a Sentence


My parents can be such a drag. They won't let me do anything. These meetings are a total drag. Let me have a drag from your cigarette. He took a long drag on the cigarette.


She dragged one of the other tables over to ours. Firefighters dragged the man to safety. One of the parents eventually dragged the screaming toddler out of the store. The broken muffler dragged behind the car. The dog's leash was dragging along the ground. The child is always dragging his blanket. The puppy ran up to us, dragging her leash behind her. He dragged himself up the stairs and climbed into bed. Can you drag yourself away from that computer?
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Hamahang lights a cigarette and takes a slow drag, enjoying this long-time habit that doesn’t seem to affect his singing. Maija Liuhto, Longreads, "A Music So Beautiful the Birds Fell from the Trees," 28 June 2018 Our favorite curling wand for quick styling Styling your hair can be a real drag and can seem futile in the summer heat. Courtney Campbell, USA TODAY, "Here are the 5 best deals on Amazon right now," 19 June 2018 SpaceShipOne’s wing would fold up to a 60-degree angle, changing the configuration so the plane’s greater surface area would create more drag and slow it down during reentry. Samantha Masunaga, latimes.com, "An interest in model airplanes paved the way for Ben Diachun of Scaled Composites," 8 June 2018 There are new wetsuits that have copied the overlapping teeth-like denticles of shark skin to reduce drag, and goggles that copy how fish and some flowers trap water to create a clearer view. Matthew Berger, Smithsonian, "Dolphins Have a Mysterious Network of Veins That Could Be Key to Preventing the Bends," 26 May 2018 That’s because the goal of the tailless design was to reduce drag and increase the bomber’s flying efficiency, boosting speed and range. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The U.S. Air Force’s First Flying Wing Jet Flew Way Back in 1949," 22 May 2018 In the video, a man can be seen taking a drag from a cigarette and then flicking it into the enclosure. Scott Berson, miamiherald, "Driver was fined $100 for smoking while kid was in the car. Some say that goes too far | Miami Herald," 15 May 2018 Heavily inspired by drag and club kid culture, as well as British punk, the '80s, and scene kids, Jung often paints fluorescent hues around her eyes in the shape of flames. Devon Abelman, Allure, "Women With No Eyebrows Explain Why Arches Aren't Necessary," 14 May 2018 Instead, Simone pulls out a cigarette from her bag and slowly leans back into her chair, taking a drag and looking right back at Jake. refinery29.com, "Sweetbitter Episode 2: Welcome To The Club," 14 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Here are WalletHub’s 10 worst cities for driving—and the main category that dragged them down: 1. Sarah Gray, Fortune, "These Are the 10 Worst Cities for Driving in 2018," 12 July 2018 Some analysts think North Korea is trying to drag out talks in hopes that the U.S. will come around to accepting it as a nuclear weapons state, perhaps in a limited form that couldn’t threaten the U.S. mainland directly. Washington Post, "Analysis: Harsh words may mean NKorea seeks deal with Trump," 9 July 2018 The man half-carried, half-dragged her across the room. Jennifer Fisher, Smithsonian, "The Adventurous Writer Who Brought Nancy Drew To Life," 2 July 2018 At least a half-dozen people exited their homes to respond to the incident, the video shows, including a man who returned items that fell off the officer as he was being dragged. Mark Price, charlotteobserver, "'Stop or I'll shoot you,' cop yells as driver drags him. He didn't stop, video shows," 29 June 2018 Then, the woman told deputies, Lindsey armed himself with a knife and held her by the throat before dragging her into the living room as their son slipped from her grasp and onto the floor. Jeff Weiner, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Children killed in Orlando standoff: Gary Wayne Lindsey Jr. had history of violence, arrests," 12 June 2018 Many of those plays had come out of a no-huddle formation, which means players must drag themselves to the line of scrimmage without the benefit of a rest break. Shawn Windsor, Detroit Free Press, "Sprinting worked for the Patriots. Why not for Matt Patricia's Lions?," 11 June 2018 Clancy represents the side of Tyler that fought to get better, against the worst wishes of Blurryface dragging him down. Paige Williams, Billboard, "Twenty One Pilots' 'Trench': Decoding the Clues They've Left About Their New Album," 12 July 2018 Multiple shorter clips also tend to work better than fewer longer ones as people often tap past clips that drag on too long. Kurt Wagner, Recode, "Cannes Lions, the ad industry’s biggest party, might finally be sobering up," 23 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

She's been working on drag magazine VELOUR and has continued to produce her show Nightgowns, which showcases a diverse array of drag performances in Brooklyn. John Paul Brammer, Teen Vogue, "Sasha Velour Gives an Intimate Look at the Making of "Pirate Jenny" and Talks Pushing Drag Into New Directions," 4 May 2018 The sunny skies were great and 70-degree temps were perfect, but a flag-snapping crosswind made the drag track sensitive to navigate for those not in tune with the conditions. Elton Alexander, cleveland.com, "NHRA Norwalk 2017: Steve Torrence gets fourth triumph at Summit Racing Equipment Nationals," 25 June 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'drag.' 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 drag


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a(1)


1887, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for drag


Middle English dragge, probably from Middle Low German draggen grapnel; akin to Old English dragan to draw — more at draw


see drag entry 1


see drag entry 1

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Statistics for drag

Last Updated

13 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for drag

The first known use of drag was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for drag



English Language Learners Definition of drag

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: someone or something that is boring, annoying, or disappointing

: someone or something that makes action or progress slower or more difficult

: the act of breathing in smoke from a cigarette, cigar, pipe, etc.



English Language Learners Definition of drag (Entry 2 of 2)

: to pull (someone or something that is heavy or difficult to move)

: to move along the ground, floor, etc., while being pulled

: to cause (something) to move along the ground, floor, etc., by pulling it


\ ˈdrag \

Kids Definition of drag

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : something used for pulling along (as a device used underwater to catch something)

2 : something without wheels (as a heavy sled for carrying loads) that is pulled along or over a surface

3 : something that slows down motion He never forgot to put on the drag as we went downhill … —Anne Sewell, Black Beauty

4 : a dull or unpleasant event, person, or thing


dragged; dragging

Kids Definition of drag (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to pull slowly or heavily I dragged over a chair.

2 : to move with slowness or difficulty She dragged herself out of bed.

3 : to move or cause to move along on the ground You're dragging your scarf. Your scarf is dragging.

4 : to bring by or as if by force He dragged us to the store.

5 : to pass or cause to pass slowly The day dragged.

6 : to hang or lag behind Quit dragging—walk faster.

7 : to search or fish by pulling something (as a net) under water

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Comments on drag

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an open space surrounded by woods

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