1

haggard

play
adjective hag·gard \ˈha-gərd\

Definition of haggard

  1. 1 of a hawk :  not tamed

  2. 2a :  wild in appearanceb :  having a worn or emaciated appearance :  gaunt haggard faces looked up sadly from out of the straw — W. M. Thackeray

haggardly

adverb

haggardness

noun

haggard was our Word of the Day on 12/03/2014. Hear the podcast!

Examples of haggard in a Sentence

  1. She looked tired and haggard.

  2. We were shocked by his haggard appearance.

Recent Examples of haggard from the Web

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

Did You Know?

Haggard comes from falconry, the sport of hunting with a trained bird of prey. The birds used in falconry were not bred in captivity until very recently. Traditionally, falconers trained wild birds that were either taken from the nest when quite young or trapped as adults. A bird trapped as an adult is termed a haggard, from the Middle French hagard. Such a bird is notoriously wild and difficult to train, and it wasn't long before the falconry sense of haggard was being applied in an extended way to a "wild" and intractable person. Next, the word came to express the way the human face looks when a person is exhausted, anxious, or terrified. Today, the most common meaning of haggard is "gaunt" or "worn."

Origin and Etymology of haggard

Middle French hagard


2

haggard

noun hag·gard

Definition of haggard

  1. 1 :  an adult hawk caught wild

  2. 2 obsolete :  an intractable person

Recent Examples of haggard from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of haggard

see 1haggard


Haggard

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biographical name Hag·gard \ˈha-gərd\

Definition of Haggard

  1. Sir (Henry) Rider 1856–1925 English novelist


HAGGARD Defined for English Language Learners

haggard

play
adjective

Definition of haggard for English Language Learners

  • : looking very thin and tired especially from great hunger, worry, or pain


HAGGARD Defined for Kids

haggard

play
adjective hag·gard \ˈha-gərd\

Definition of haggard for Students

  1. :  having a hungry, tired, or worried look … she stared down at the table at a loss for words and then, at last, she raised a haggard face. — Mary Norton, The Borrowers



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