rag·​ged | \ ˈra-gəd How to pronounce ragged (audio) \

Definition of ragged

1 : roughly unkempt
2 : having an irregular edge or outline
3a : torn or worn to tatters
b : worn-out from stress and strain ran herself ragged
4 : wearing tattered clothes
5a : straggly
b : executed in an irregular or uneven manner
c of a sound : harsh, dissonant

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Other Words from ragged

raggedly adverb
raggedness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for ragged



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Examples of ragged in a Sentence

a boy in ragged jeans You look a little ragged—did you have a rough week?
Recent Examples on the Web Their ragged edges and growing affection fit them together like symbiotes. Washington Post, "Sally Thorne’s ‘Second First Impressions’ is full of cracking attraction and cackling laughs," 30 Apr. 2021 He was run ragged making media and commercial appearances in the months leading up to, and after, the 2014 NFL draft. Jim Geraghty, National Review, "The Quick Rise and Quicker Fall of Michael Sam," 29 Apr. 2021 Here every flower grows ragged and sideways and always beautiful. oregonlive, "‘The Ragged and the Beautiful,’ by Safiya Sinclair: American Life in Poetry," 5 Apr. 2021 During the seven years she's been running Honey + Rye Bakehouse in St. Louis Park, Anne Andrus had been running herself ragged. Rachel Hutton, Star Tribune, "How Minnesotans are hanging onto the positive life changes they made during the pandemic," 2 Apr. 2021 In a dramatic two-hour, double-elimination Super Eight episode that swept away both Crab and Seashell as season 5 surfs to a close, the crustacean with the voice of a ragged angel said goodbye with his pincers held high. Gil Kaufman, Billboard, "Crab Exits 'Masked Singer' With Claws Held High: 'It Was Just About Pure Fun'," 21 Apr. 2021 Knowledge Fight’s focus has shifted this post-Trump year to chronicling the ragged downward spiral of Mr. Jones, a conspiracist who has lost the plot. New York Times, "Alex Jones’s Podcasting Hecklers Face Their Foil’s Downward Slide," 18 Apr. 2021 The story of Afghanistan is a story of how the greatest superpower in the history of the world was repeatedly humbled by ragged guerrillas who were short on money and advanced weaponry but long on motivation and ferocity. Steve Chapman, chicagotribune.com, "Column: Biden faces the tragic truth in Afghanistan," 16 Apr. 2021 But there is also something universal about the ragged vulnerability the love affair accesses in Mr. Nelson’s writing, and in his willingness to portray naked, often weepy, emotion. Sam Sacks, WSJ, "Fiction: ‘Open Water’ Review," 16 Apr. 2021

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for ragged

Time Traveler

The first known use of ragged was in the 14th century

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Statistics for ragged

Last Updated

6 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Ragged.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ragged. Accessed 7 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for ragged



English Language Learners Definition of ragged

: having an edge or surface that is not straight or even
: in bad condition especially because of being torn
: wearing clothes that are torn and in poor condition


rag·​ged | \ ˈra-gəd How to pronounce ragged (audio) \

Kids Definition of ragged

1 : having a rough or uneven edge or outline ragged cliffs
2 : very worn-out : tattered ragged clothes
3 : wearing very worn-out clothes
4 : done in an uneven way a ragged performance

Other Words from ragged

raggedly adverb
raggedness noun

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Comments on ragged

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