hang·​ing | \ ˈhaŋ-iŋ How to pronounce hanging (audio) \

Definition of hanging

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : situated or lying on steeply sloping ground
2a : jutting out : overhanging a hanging rock
b : supported only by the wall on one side a hanging staircase
3 archaic : downcast in appearance
4 : adapted for sustaining a hanging object
5 : deserving, likely to cause, or prone to inflict death by hanging



Definition of hanging (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an execution by strangling or breaking the neck by a suspended noose
2 : something hung: such as
b : a covering (such as a tapestry) for a wall
3 : a downward slope : declivity

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Examples of hanging in a Sentence

Adjective hanging branches blocked our way for a good part of the trail light from a hanging chandelier filled the great hall Noun The hanging was scheduled for 3 o'clock. He was sentenced to death by hanging.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective To make hanging loop, bend wire in half; twist ends together. Megan Fulweiler, Woman's Day, "Grouchy Ghost Clay Decorations," 9 Sep. 2019 The retailer’s inspectors saw dangerous connections, including loose and hanging wires at several locations, according to the complaint. Chris Dolmetsch, Fortune, "Walmart Suit Says Tesla Installed Faulty Rooftop Solar Panels That Caused Multiple Fires," 20 Aug. 2019 Move heavy objects to lower shelves and secure hanging objects, cabinet doors and appliances with safety straps, fasteners and adhesives. Rose Meily, The Mercury News, "It’s never too early to prepare for an earthquake," 12 July 2019 So there’s no more hanging out of the window for a quick puff. Josh Duboff, Vanities, "What Prince Harry Has Reportedly Given Up for Meghan Markle," 12 Dec. 2017 So there’s no more hanging out of the window for a quick puff. Christopher Rosa, Glamour, "Prince Harry Has Reportedly Stopped Smoking for Meghan Markle," 12 Dec. 2017 Sagittarius (November 22-December 21) Don't date: Cancer (June 21-July 22) Cultured, epicurean Cancers make great hanging buddies, but keep them in the friend zone. The Astrotwins, Woman's Day, "Which Sign You Definitely Shouldn't Date," 4 Apr. 2017 The gym includes a piano and five hanging toys: an infant mirror, an elephant with a clacker, a frog with a rolling ball, a tiger and a hippo teether, each with different textures and colors. Rachel Rothman, Good Housekeeping, "Fisher Price Kick and Play Piano Gym," 30 June 2017 In Collins' honor, the organization is pushing anti-hate legislation in the county, where a noose was recently found hanging outside of a middle school. The Washington Post, NOLA.com, "Slain Bowie State student laid to rest; hate crime investigation underway," 27 May 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Throughout their history the Royal Parks have been fields of gore, the sites of hangings, duels and violent riots. B.r., The Economist, "The violent history of London’s Royal Parks," 22 Nov. 2019 Since it's attached to the ceiling, this way of hanging clears up more floor space for merchandise. Katie Bourque, Good Housekeeping, "The Real Upside Down Christmas Tree Meaning Will Explain Why You Keep Seeing Them," 3 Oct. 2019 Photos of hangings and brutality of war were taken by soldiers with their personal cameras and were in private possession. Mary Ann Grossmann, Twin Cities, "Ethiopian women soldiers who fought Mussolini’s army inspire tender, tragic novel," 22 Sep. 2019 Hicks was tried instead in a federal court on a piracy charge, which carried the penalty of a public hanging. Bill Daley, chicagotribune.com, "Rich Cohen’s ‘Last Pirate of New York’ recalls America’s gangster history. But is it truly history?," 5 Sep. 2019 Endless suicides, women who drown themselves in cisterns, hang themselves by doorknobs: Atwood, perhaps in homage to a Puritan ancestor who was hanged for a witch, pays particular attention to the primitive nature of hanging. Susan Straight, Los Angeles Times, "Review: ‘Handmaid’s Tale’ sequel ‘The Testaments’ puts Margaret Atwood’s powers on full display," 4 Sep. 2019 Outside of hanging by the pool or on the sand, couples can experience activities like kayaking, snorkeling, yoga, and paddle boarding. Brooke Bobb, Vogue, "7 Fall Mini-Moon Destinations For Every Type of Newlywed Couple," 2 Sep. 2019 Loop the top wire for easy hanging and pick the perfect spot to display your DIY Christmas decoration. Rebecca Norris, Country Living, "Christmas Kissing Balls Came Way Before Mistletoe—and They're Making a Comeback," 1 Nov. 2019 In The Handmaid’s Tale, the hanging wall is the public spot where bodies of those who have committed crimes are hung. Rachel Desantis, PEOPLE.com, "Photographer Defends Handmaid's Tale Wedding Shoot: 'Everyone Loves a Good Witch Hunt'," 3 Oct. 2019

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


12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for hanging

Time Traveler

The first known use of hanging was in the 12th century

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Cite this Entry

“Hanging.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hanging?pronunciation&lang=en_us&dir=h&file=hang0004. Accessed 13 December 2019.

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More Definitions for hanging



English Language Learners Definition of hanging

: the act of killing someone by hanging that person from a rope tied around the neck
: something (such as a curtain) that is hung on a wall especially for decoration

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Comments on hanging

What made you want to look up hanging? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


easily led, controlled, or managed

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