\ ˈgad How to pronounce gad (audio) \

Definition of gad

 (Entry 1 of 5)

1 : a chisel or pointed iron or steel bar for loosening ore or rock
2 chiefly dialectal : a long stick


gadded; gadding

Definition of gad (Entry 2 of 5)

intransitive verb

: to be on the go without a specific aim or purpose usually used with about

Definition of gad (Entry 3 of 5)

used as a mild oath
\ ˈgad How to pronounce Gad (audio) \

Definition of Gad (Entry 4 of 5)

: a son of Jacob and the traditional eponymous ancestor of one of the tribes of Israel

Definition of GAD (Entry 5 of 5)

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Other Words from gad

Noun (2)

Gadite \ ˈga-​ˌdīt How to pronounce GAD (audio) \ noun

Examples of gad in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Did Nordo’s screechingly daffy ex-wife (Opal Peachey), gadding about with an imaginary Chihuahua on a leash, off him with a butcher knife? Misha Berson, The Seattle Times, "Review: ‘Lost Falls’ is a little David Lynch, a lot Cafe Nordo," 23 May 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'gad.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of gad

Noun (1)

circa 1535, in the meaning defined at sense 2


15th century, in the meaning defined above


1608, in the meaning defined above

Noun (2)

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for gad

Noun (1)

Middle English, "spike, goad, metal bar," borrowed from Old Norse gaddr "goad, spike," going back to Germanic *gazda- "stick, rod, goad" — more at yard entry 4


Middle English gadden, of obscure origin


euphemism for God

Noun (2)

Hebrew Gādh

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Time Traveler for gad

Time Traveler

The first known use of gad was before the 12th century

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Statistics for gad

Cite this Entry

“Gad.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/gad. Accessed 15 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for gad


\ ˈgad How to pronounce gad (audio) \
gadded; gadding

Kids Definition of gad

: to wander or roam from place to place … we went gadding along, dropping in here and there …— Mark Twain, A Connecticut Yankee

Medical Definition of GAD

generalized anxiety disorder

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More from Merriam-Webster on gad

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for gad

Nglish: Translation of gad for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about gad

Comments on gad

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