\ ˈswag How to pronounce swag (audio) \

Definition of swag

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 informal
a : goods acquired by unlawful means : booty, loot … the swag from this and other forms of graft was kept hidden …— Frederick Lewis Allen … a pirate's spectral wife, who has roamed the harbor ever since she was left behind to guard his swag.— Katharine Whittemore
b : valuable articles or goods One of the premier spots in the area to land home-bar swag is Pub Stuff in Stafford. The store is packed with everything … for homeowners looking to make their bar stand out.— Matt Pais
c : promotional goods or items … Ravens gear was selling better than O's swag. I bought one of the cartoon-bird caps …— David Simon
d : goods given to people who attend or participate in an event Her handbags … one year were a part of the swag celebrities brought home from the Screen Actors Guild Awards.— Karen Martin
e : money, lucre … affirmed that he is now bonded to pay up to $5,000 to any listener who may lose out on swag being offered by another network.— Saul Carson
2a : a decorative strip or chain hanging in a curve between two points : festoon … transverse swags of carmine floral design and top crown frieze …— James Joyce
b : a suspended cluster of something (such as evergreen branches) Garlands of green, with roses interspersed, were in swags and loops about the splendid walls …— E. Barrington
3 : a slow movement back and forth : sway sense 1 … a shudder took the whole structure of the vessel and my body on the bed, too, and the Kentucky Queen yawed to the deep inner swag of the river.— Robert Penn Warren
4 chiefly Australia : a pack of personal belongings … I'd be the last to strike my tent and sling my swag.— Ambrose Bierce

Definition of swag (Entry 2 of 3)

US slang
: bold or brash self-confidence : swagger, cockiness His theory: "If you want the world to change, you must be the change you want in the world … . It's good to have swag but better to have substance."— Briana Barner On Sunday, hometown faves Derrick Carter and Jamila Woods tear up the Blue stage while Beyonce's little sister, Solange, brings her grown woman swag as the headliner on the Green stage.— Mary L. Dratcher Lewis spoke of "a breezy self confidence," known perhaps today as swag— Anton Allahar I'm not just talking about his cheesy one-liners and the smirk that sometimes comes with them—the way he delivers that line is pure swag.— LaToya Ferguson


swagged; swagging

Definition of swag (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to adorn with swags
2 : to arrange (something, such as drapery) in swags

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Synonyms for swag

Synonyms: Noun (1)

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of swag in a Sentence

Noun (1) The robbers divided the swag. robbed a bank and hid the swag under the floorboards Verb the days of endless worrying had taken their toll, and the old woman's face swagged with exhaustion
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Her swag, her comedy, and her body language are all so cohesive and effortless. Paul Mccallion, Vulture, "RuPaul’s Drag Race Recap: The Spy Who Dragged Me," 8 Jan. 2021 San Diego Comic-Con 2020 was canceled, but the stars and the swag came to our computers via Comic-Con@Home. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: In 2020, San Diego’s artistic spirit made a bad year better," 24 Dec. 2020 The restaurant has been surviving on private donations and sales from its online gift shop, the Mai-Kai Trading Post, which sells tiki mugs and other nostalgic swag. Phillip Valys, sun-sentinel.com, "Mai-Kai’s costly nightmare: Historic restaurant to stay closed up to a year after roof cave-in," 23 Dec. 2020 The gift boxes were full of swag from Paul Wall and Red Bull, including copies of Subculture and a link to access his recent Red Bull Media House Studio Session. Matt Young, Chron, "Paul Wall - er, 'Slab Santa' - hands out Christmas presents around the city," 15 Dec. 2020 And on Election Day, DaBaby, whose real name is Jonathan Kirk, will visit polling locations in his hometown of Charlotte with television host Ally Lynn to give swag to those waiting to cast their ballot. Alaa Elassar, CNN, "Rapper DaBaby is partnering with a voter campaign to provide free rides to the polls," 1 Nov. 2020 Each 5-foot swag comes with eight mini-mittens handmade from leftover materials, not a bit going to waste. Nicole Hvidsten, Star Tribune, "Essential Minnesota gift guide: 61 perfect picks while we're all home for the holidays," 27 Nov. 2020 Over the summer, Holt and his team sold yakitori bento boxes, frozen cocktails and Salaryman swag like T-shirts. Sarah Blaskovich, Dallas News, "Acclaimed Dallas ramen shop Salaryman closed permanently; its chef is battling leukemia," 17 Nov. 2020 Streetside Instead of releasing new beers, Streetside is going with the swag for Black Friday this year. Matt Koesters, The Enquirer, "Black Friday special beer releases from Cincinnati breweries," 23 Nov. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Then head over to Rival, the award-winning boutique hotel has a retro Art Deco swag that’s inviting and super chic. Essence, "Get Lost: 72 Hours in Stockholm," 11 June 2020 From major labels to local designers, her style (shout out her stylist Scot Louie) and swag behind each look are impeccable. Check out our favorite looks from Ryan Destiny below. Maiya Carmichael, Essence, "Ryan Destiny Has The Chicest Throwback Style," 8 Aug. 2019 The two-bedroom suite is further swagged out with robes, pillows, towels, and eye masks in Hästens's trademark blue and white checkered pattern. Kaitlin Menza, House Beautiful, "This NYC Hotel Now Offers a Room with a $200,000 Mattress," 13 Dec. 2019 Business is all about the packaging, and the enormous stacks of sharply illustrated shipping boxes for all that swag sent a clear and strong message. Joseph Goodman | Jgoodman@al.com, al, "Go inside Santa Saban’s NFL swag boxes," 24 Sep. 2019 The 100-year-old maroon velvet rope still swags alongside the curving stairs. Judy Rose, Detroit Free Press, "John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King Jr. were guests in $2.1M Detroit mansion," 10 July 2019 Souvenirs from his time include a fortune worth of silk window treatments — draped, swagged, fringed, puddled or ballooned — that reach past 20 feet tall in the living room. Judy Rose, Detroit Free Press, "$2.35M Bloomfield Hills home comes with 2 kitchens and a tree house," 29 June 2019 In Rossa, Buren’s stripes wrap the soft edges of the building, the two patterns of color meeting in a swagging line around the middle. Shonquis Moreno, Curbed, "‘If you take out the art, the building itself can’t stand’," 6 Aug. 2018

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

Noun (1)

1660, in the meaning defined at sense 3

Noun (2)

2003, in the meaning defined above


1530, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for swag

Noun (2)

short for swagger entry 2


perhaps of Scandinavian origin; akin to Norwegian svagga to sway, rock; akin to Middle Low German swacken to rock

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Statistics for swag

Last Updated

18 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Swag.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/swag. Accessed 25 Jan. 2021.

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Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about swag

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