nag

1 of 3

verb

nagged; nagging

transitive verb

1
: to irritate by constant scolding or urging
2

intransitive verb

1
: to find fault incessantly : complain
2
: to be a persistent source of annoyance or distraction
nagger noun

nag

2 of 3

noun (1)

: one who nags habitually

nag

3 of 3

noun (2)

: horse
especially : one that is old or in poor condition

Examples of nag in a Sentence

Verb Mom's always nagging me about my hair. All you ever do is nag. My parents are always nagging me to clean my room. He kept nagging her until she agreed to see the movie. Quit nagging! I already said I'm not going. Noun (2) a poor farmer who could only afford one old nag
Recent Examples on the Web
Verb
Across all industries, the most major concerns were data security and cost accuracy, nagging 46 percent and 43 percent of leaders, respectively. Meghan Hall, Sourcing Journal, 10 July 2024 Later, when the nurturing Moon bothers fiery Mars, frustration may nag at us to give up. Tarot.com, New York Daily News, 8 July 2024 The ankle injury has nagged the former UConn star since last season. Emily Adams, Hartford Courant, 25 June 2024 At one point, they’re nagged by an obnoxious British record exec ready to exploit them for the U.K. market. Margaret Farrell, SPIN, 14 June 2024 White said there is no timeline currently on when Jefferson will be available again, but the ankle injury has nagged the former UConn star since last season with the Phoenix Mercury. Emily Adams, Hartford Courant, 6 June 2024 Representation matters is the dead-eyed refrain of the flacks who nag Julio to abandon his crazy flights of fancy and just make Gaytino already. Judy Berman, TIME, 7 June 2024 But there’s something nagging me about Battery’s podium. Byallie Garfinkle, Fortune, 6 June 2024 After years of reporting on forever chemicals, ProPublica reporter Sharon Lerner had one question that still nagged at her. ProPublica, 24 May 2024
Noun
In the earliest and most predictable part of the show, the half-dozen Thoughts are a chorus line of nags operating from a hive mind of self-hostility. Chris Willman, Variety, 28 June 2024 Still, the question suggested by the book’s title nags: What should economists and policymakers have learned from the crisis and its aftermath? Alan S. Blinder, Foreign Affairs, 16 Feb. 2015 And that the ever-insightful manager of a brilliant fund has spotted a better horse to ride while realizing a loss on a horse that turned out to be a nag. Scott Burns, Dallas News, 15 Jan. 2021 That archly strangled locution, the ceaseless scorn: the vendor’s voice nags at the former Dean Street boy. Rachel Cusk, Harper's Magazine, 27 Sep. 2023 Here again, a tonal dissonance nags: Encounters between Alex and his mother’s campaign team live in the satirical world of Veep, while his adventures at Buckingham Palace hew closer to Amanda Bynes in What A Girl Wants. Lovia Gyarkye, The Hollywood Reporter, 10 Aug. 2023 And why, a small voice nags at me, is my life not as interesting as this? Lance Richardson, Washington Post, 3 July 2023 Rogen: The wife is a nag, the guy is a lovable idiot. Yvonne Villarreal, Los Angeles Times, 7 June 2023 There’s Syril Karn (Kyle Soller), a lowly corporate security apparatchik with the pretensions of an Imperial officer and with simmering, repressed rage instilled by a tyrannical nag of a mother. David Klion, The New Republic, 1 Dec. 2022

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'nag.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Verb

probably of Scandinavian origin; akin to Old Norse nagga to moan, complain

Noun (2)

Middle English nagge; akin to Dutch negge small horse

First Known Use

Verb

circa 1828, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Noun (1)

1925, in the meaning defined above

Noun (2)

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of nag was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near nag

Cite this Entry

“Nag.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/nag. Accessed 23 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

nag

1 of 3 noun
: horse entry 1 sense 1a
especially : a horse that is old and in poor condition

nag

2 of 3 verb
nagged; nagging
1
: to annoy by repeated faultfinding, scolding, or urging
kept nagging me to let her come
always nags him to clean his room
2
: to cause (someone) to feel annoyed or worried for a long period of time
a problem that nagged at her
nagger noun

nag

3 of 3 noun
: a person who frequently nags
Etymology

Noun

Middle English nagge "horse"

Verb

probably of Scandinavian origin

More from Merriam-Webster on nag

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