\ ˈdrag How to pronounce drag (audio) \
plural drags

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
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 caricature or challenge gender stereotypes (as by dressing in clothing that is stereotypical of another gender, by using exaggeratedly gendered mannerisms, or by combining elements of stereotypically male and female dress) and often wear elaborate or outrageous costumes "… Atlanta … was, like, mecca for drag. It had the traditional drag queens who were female impersonators. But, you know, I had come from the punk rock side of the tracks, and we did drag as a social comment …"— RuPaul often used before another noun Drag shows are events where performers impersonate characters from a certain gender and often don elaborate costuming and makeup.— Lauren WavraThe drama sparked a conversation within the LGBTQ community regarding trans, female, and nonbinary drag performers.— Xavier Piedra — see also drag king, drag queen
b(1) : the costumes worn by drag performers performing in drag also : stereotypically gendered clothing worn by someone who is of a different gender … writing about her first experience using the men's toilets while in male drag— Anna Carey
(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 How to pronounce drag (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for drag

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Verb

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Examples of drag in a Sentence

Noun 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. Verb 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 To be completely real, washing your hair can be such a drag. Angela Trakoshis, Allure, "9 Dry Shampoos That Are Virtually Invisible on Dark Hair," 18 Apr. 2021 That said, living in serious times doesn’t mean that fashion must be a drag. Tina Isaac-goizé, Vogue, "“What Surprises Is Their Self-Expression and Individuality, It’s Very High Level”—Meet the Fashion Finalists of the Festival d’Hyères," 6 Apr. 2021 Even for scientists who have dedicated their lives to understanding gravity, the force’s relentless downward pull is sometimes a drag. Karmela Padavic-callaghan, Scientific American, "Ultracold Quantum Collisions Have Been Achieved in Space for the First Time," 19 Mar. 2021 These new obstacles aren’t just a drag for the chemical industry. New York Times, "For One British Industry, Brexit’s Red Tape Is Just Beginning," 18 Jan. 2021 If doing homework wasn’t already a drag, imagine having to do it while your friends are out and about in Los Angeles posting TikToks. Danielle Tullo, Seventeen, "Becoming Avani: How A Teen From Indiana Built A Social Media Empire," 12 Jan. 2021 The side of me that’s being held back by being a woman director first is a drag. Leah Greenblatt, EW.com, "Patty Jenkins on Wonder Woman 1984, her path as a director, and the franchise’s future," 24 Dec. 2020 The last nine months have been a drag, pandemic included. John Canzano, oregonlive, "Canzano: Marcus Mariota, Mario Cristobal and Justin Herbert provide joyful intersection," 18 Dec. 2020 Dying or being unable to breathe without assistance of a machine is kind of a drag, too. Michael Smolens Columnist, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: COVID-19 deaths will be ‘a 9/11 every single day’," 6 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The winch presumably would drag the drone across the deck and up the ramp. David Axe, Forbes, "Behold The Turkish Navy’s Drone Aircraft Carrier," 10 May 2021 What’s typically an hourslong legislative slog could drag into a dayslong showdown starting Tuesday at the Senate Rules Committee, a surprising new venue in the nation’s broader debate over voting rules. Lisa Mascaro, The Courier-Journal, "Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell poised for starring role in upcoming voting bill fight," 10 May 2021 For about 10 days in June, a contractor will drag the lake’s waters with a gill net and pull up lake trout. Brian Maffly, The Salt Lake Tribune, "Bear Lake’s sterile lake trout are headed to other Idaho lakes," 27 Apr. 2021 The defense will always drag the victim’s name through the mud. Washington Post, "With a verdict, troubled reflections," 21 Apr. 2021 Disputes with multinationals such as Facebook Inc. drag on for years. Richard Rubin, WSJ, "Biden’s Big Agenda Relies on a Shrunken, Strained Agency: The IRS," 20 Apr. 2021 The white men drag Henry into the basement and attempt to lynch him in front of his daughters. Ariana Romero, refinery29.com, "Them’s Finale Loses The Thread & Then Sets It On Fire," 11 Apr. 2021 The chances of winning a fight in the Mexican legal system are slim and the process can drag on for decades. Wendy Fry, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Trouble in paradise: Americans say they’ve lost access to their Baja resort homes," 10 Apr. 2021 The global leadership that has been lacking throughout the last year needs to kick in soon, or the pandemic will drag on for many more months, or even years. Stephen Collinson And Caitlin Hu, CNN, "Don't be misled by good Covid-19 news in some nations. The pandemic is worse than ever elsewhere," 9 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Portrayed by Jared Johnson, 32, who grew up on Milwaukee's north side, Hall emerged in Milwaukee's drag scene nine years ago, becoming a regular performer at Hamburger Mary's. Piet Levy, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Milwaukee's Jaida Essence Hall wins 'RuPaul's Drag Race' season 12," 29 May 2020 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

Noun, Verb, and Adjective

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

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Time Traveler for drag

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for drag

Last Updated

12 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Drag.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/drag. Accessed 15 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for drag



English Language Learners Definition of drag

 (Entry 1 of 2)

informal : someone or something that is boring, annoying, or disappointing
informal : someone or something that makes action or progress slower or more difficult
informal : 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 How to pronounce drag (audio) \

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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