hang·​dog | \ ˈhaŋ-ˌdȯg How to pronounce hangdog (audio) \

Definition of hangdog

 (Entry 1 of 2)



Definition of hangdog (Entry 2 of 2)

: a despicable or miserable person

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Examples of hangdog in a Sentence

Adjective He came home with a hangdog expression on his face. “Why do you look so hangdog today?” she asked
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Kidman is rivaled occasionally by the craggy yet sympathetically hangdog performance from Grant as the prime suspect. Washington Post, "‘The Undoing’ is less absorbing than ‘Big Little Lies,’ but Nicole Kidman fans probably won’t mind," 22 Oct. 2020 Rhys’s Mason—not yet an attorney—slumped his way through different levels of professional and personal dejection, with egg on his tie and a hangdog expression. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, "The Conundrum of a New Perry Mason," 25 June 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Sam Lloyd, best known for his portrayal of hangdog lawyer Ted Buckland on Scrubs, has died. Maureen Lee Lenker, EW.com, "Scrubs and Cougar Town actor Sam Lloyd dies at 56," 1 May 2020 Barry’s hangdog, sad-eyed charm recalls one of Sandler’s first stabs at more dramatic, or at least more emotional, material: 1999’s Big Daddy. Tyler Aquilina, EW.com, "Adam Sandler’s classic comedies prove he’s a great dramatic actor: Opinion," 29 Dec. 2019 The actor, 41, who stars as Succession’s hangdog antihero Kendall Roy, is giving a thoughtful answer about the HBO drama’s storytelling. Kristen Baldwin, EW.com, "The ultimate Succession interview: Jeremy Strong, Sarah Snook, and Kieran Culkin talk to each other about stuff," 11 Dec. 2019 Hauser taps into Jewell’s tendency toward hangdog dejection beautifully, giving a performance miles away from the cartoonish (but cute) work he’s done onscreen until now. David Sims, The Atlantic, "Richard Jewell Offers a Murky Picture of Heroism," 10 Dec. 2019 His combustibility, his pugnaciousness, his scorching sarcasm, his intelligence, and his toughness all played off against his tortured hangdog eyes, his mild speech impediment in the early films, his vincibility. Kyle Smith, National Review, "Why Al Pacino Matters," 29 Nov. 2019 Owen Teague, so perfectly brooding in Bloodline, is adorably hangdog as Julian, a 19-year-old who meets Eve in a creative writing class and immediately develops a crush. Kristen Baldwin, EW.com, "Kathryn Hahn is porn again in HBO's Mrs. Fletcher," 22 Oct. 2019 Crudup shifts from giving a rote performance to channeling the kind of hangdog empathy that’s powered some of his recent great performances (such as in 20th Century Women and Jackie). David Sims, The Atlantic, "Richard Linklater’s Where’d You Go, Bernadette Is a Gripping Mess," 16 Aug. 2019 Kendall spends the first five episodes being more low-energy than a post-divorce Ross Geller, as hangdog as Droopy. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, "Succession Is Better Than Ever," 11 Aug. 2019

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


1677, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1687, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for hangdog

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The first known use of hangdog was in 1677

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Cite this Entry

“Hangdog.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hangdog. Accessed 27 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for hangdog


How to pronounce hangdog (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of hangdog

: sad or depressed

More from Merriam-Webster on hangdog

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for hangdog

Nglish: Translation of hangdog for Spanish Speakers

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