\ ˈpləg How to pronounce plug (audio) \

Definition of plug

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a piece used to fill a hole : stopper
b : an obtruding or obstructing mass of material resembling a stopper
2 : a flat compressed cake of tobacco
3 : a small core or segment removed from a larger object
4 : something inferior especially : an inferior often aged or unsound horse
6 : an artificial fishing lure used primarily for casting and made with one or more sets of gang hooks
7 : any of various devices resembling or functioning like a plug: such as
a : a male fitting for making an electrical connection to a live circuit by insertion in a receptacle (such as an outlet)
b : a device for connecting electric wires to a jack
8 : a piece of favorable publicity or a favorable mention usually incorporated in general matter


plugged; plugging

Definition of plug (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to stop, make tight, or secure by inserting a plug
b : to remedy (a deficiency) as if by inserting a plug trying to plug the gaps in their understanding
2 : to hit with a bullet : shoot
3 : to advertise or publicize insistently

intransitive verb

1 : to become plugged usually used with up
2 : to work doggedly and persistently plugged away at her homework
3 : to fire shots
plug into
1 : to connect or become connected to by or as if by means of a plug the city was plugged into the new highway system
2 : to load into as if by means of a plug plugged the data into a computer

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Other Words from plug


plugger noun

Synonyms for plug

Synonyms: Verb

block, bung, dam, fill, pack, stop, stuff

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Examples of plug in a Sentence


We were able to plug the hole with cement. One of the DJs on the local radio station has been plugging the band's new album. He plugged him right in the chest.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Between 1949 and 1973, when President Richard Nixon pulled the plug on the federal urban renewal program, nearly 1,000 cities built more than 2,500 projects. Tom Condon,, "As Connecticut cities revive, what did we learn from the mistakes of urban renewal?," 26 June 2019 The Milwaukee Brewers pulled the plug on the Brett Lawrie experiment Tuesday after insufficient progress was made during 3½ months of the unique project. Tom Haudricourt, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Brewers pull plug on Brett Lawrie experiment after physical rehab benchmarks were not met," 18 June 2019 Powers’ generosity pulls the plug on it — a gesture that, in our age of market dominance, couldn’t be more desirable. Christopher Knight,, "MOCA on the rebound? Three strong shows and free entry are welcome signs of change," 12 June 2019 The order would not be binding, the official noted, meaning Trump could still pull the plug on the tariffs over the weekend if the two sides were to strike a deal. NBC News, "Progress in Mexico tariff talks, but still 'a long way to go,' officials say," 7 June 2019 Brown said Cleveland has learned a lot since 2017, when Jackson pulled the plug on a $3.5 million plan to develop a professional-grade motorbike track and stunt area at Marion Motley Park on the city’s East Side. Robert Higgs,, "Cleveland strategy for curbing illegal dirt bike riders involves series of summer events, developing professional-grade track," 5 June 2019 Responding to a moderator’s question about some of IBM’s perceived AI setbacks, including clients pulling the plug on projects and the relatively slow uptake of Watson, Mr. Krishna defended his company’s position in the market. Jared Council, WSJ, "Data Challenges Are Halting AI Projects, IBM Executive Says," 28 May 2019 But the idea alarms transit officials, who note that BART would lose funding for new rail cars and other infrastructure if its board pulls the plug on next year’s fare hike. Rachel Swan,, "Crusade for riders or risky gambit? BART director pushes to delay fare increase," 4 June 2019 The company grounded its operation, while Khosrowshahi weighed whether to pull the plug altogether. Andrew J. Hawkins, The Verge, "The Verge 2018 tech report card: Uber," 29 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Just kind of keep on plugging along, keep trying to improve other aspects of the game. Jace Frederick, Twin Cities, "‘Captain America!’: Hazeltine hero Patrick Reed is back in Minnesota, and returning to form," 2 July 2019 Services that plug into smartphones and transmit data back to health providers, such as glucose monitors and sleep trackers, are becoming more widely available. Ron Hurtibise,, "Is forced telemedicine the future of healthcare?," 28 June 2019 Standing in a sliver of shade cast by a solar streetlamp, David Kwaje plugs statistics into his smartphone. Nina Strochlic, National Geographic, "In Uganda, a unique urban experiment is under way," 17 June 2019 Among these, several are likely to be plug-in hybrids, but Ford has also suggested the possibility of an onboard generator system for the F-150 hybrid, a model that could share its hybrid design with the Bronco. Bengt Halvorson, Car and Driver, "Ford Confirms It: A Hybrid Bronco Is Coming," 9 May 2019 Rather than save the big reveal to Jon for the middle of the season, the GoT showrunners plugged it right in at the end of the episode. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Jon Snow Learns His True Identity in Game of Thrones the Season 8 Premiere," 15 Apr. 2019 Its first product was a device that allowed radios to be plugged into wall outlets. Jon Chesto,, "Raytheon, United Technologies agree to blockbuster defense deal," 9 June 2019 Device management for iPhones, iPads and iPods has moved to the Finder in Mac, which means iTunes won’t open every time an iOS device is plugged into a Mac, a long-overdue feature. Micah Singleton, Billboard, "What's Really Going On With Apple's iTunes Shutdown?," 5 June 2019 Human trials will be hard to conduct, and a cell is a fiendishly complicated environment with many variables to keep track of: experiments in manipulating the bioelectric field have revealed that there are still many gaps to be plugged. Sally Adee, Quartz, "Our bodies are full of electricity that could help us fight cancer," 30 May 2019

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


1606, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1630, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for plug


Dutch, from Middle Dutch plugge; akin to Middle High German pfloc plug

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Statistics for plug

Last Updated

8 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for plug

The first known use of plug was in 1606

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More Definitions for plug



English Language Learners Definition of plug

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a part at the end of an electric cord that has two or three metal pins that connect the cord to a source of electricity
: a part at the end of a wire or cable that is used to connect machines or devices
: a thing that is used to close a hole in a container or object



English Language Learners Definition of plug (Entry 2 of 2)

: to fill or cover (a hole, space, etc.) with something
: to praise (something, such as a book, movie, or restaurant) publicly in a way that makes people want to buy it, see it, etc. : to advertise (something) by talking about it especially on the radio or television
US, informal + old-fashioned : to shoot (someone) with a gun


\ ˈpləg How to pronounce plug (audio) \

Kids Definition of plug

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a device usually on a cord used to make an electrical connection by putting it into another part (as a socket)
2 : a piece (as of wood or metal) used to stop up or fill a hole


plugged; plugging

Kids Definition of plug (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to connect to an electric circuit Plug in the lamp.
2 : to stop or make tight with something that fills a hole
3 : to keep steadily at work or in action I plugged away at my homework.


\ ˈpləg How to pronounce plug (audio) \

Medical Definition of plug

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a piece of material (as wood or alloy) used or serving to fill a hole: as
a : the piece in a cock that can be turned to regulate the flow of liquid or gas
b : an obstructing mass of material in a bodily vessel or opening (as of the cervix or a skin lesion)
c : a filling for a hollow tooth
plugged; plugging

Medical Definition of plug (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to stop, make tight, or secure (as an opening) by or as if by insertion of a plug : close an opening in
2 : to fill a cavity in (a tooth)

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More from Merriam-Webster on plug

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with plug

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for plug

Spanish Central: Translation of plug

Nglish: Translation of plug for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of plug for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about plug

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characterized by aphorism

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