\ ˈzig How to pronounce zig (audio) \

Definition of zig

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : one of the sharp turns, angles, or alterations in a zigzag course
b : one of the short straight lines or sections of a zigzag course at an angle to a zag
2 : a sharp alteration or change of direction (as in a process or policy) the quick zigs and zags of his international maneuveringsThe New York Times


zigged; zigging

Definition of zig (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to execute a zig usually contrasted with zag zigs when others zag

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Synonyms & Antonyms for zig

Synonyms: Verb

break, cut, sheer, swerve, veer, yaw, zag

Antonyms: Verb


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Examples of zig in a Sentence


the fox zigged to the right, and the hounds followed

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

But the crocodile family tree wasn't all cookie-cutter, zig-zagging pearly whites. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Prehistoric Crocodiles Preferred Plants Over Prey," 28 June 2019 Indeed, what was once a stark-white corner storefront is now ornamented with boxwood topiaries and a zig-zag pattern—borrowed from the regimental tie of the Royal Artillery—covers the exterior awnings and the interior floors and walls. Zachary Weiss, Vogue, "At the New Rowing Blazers Flagship, a Champagne-Fueled House Party Raged," 3 May 2019 Martin ran a zig-zag path to evade the bullets and escaped. Andrew Selsky, The Seattle Times, "New push for justice after 4 Dutch journalists slain in 1982," 25 Mar. 2019 So consider this your map for the zig-zagging path to parenthood. Colleen Leahey Mckeegan, Marie Claire, "Marie Claire's Guide to Having a Baby," 1 Oct. 2018 Dolomite Mountains, the local company behind the structured ski safari, takes care of complicated details, and employs UIAGM/IFMGA certified mountain guides to navigate the zig-zagging itinerary. Amy Tara Koch, Vogue, "The Slopes Less Taken: Going on a Ski Safari in the Dolomites," 7 Mar. 2019 Kate sported the look with shoulder-length curls during the Berlin reception, along with nude zig-zag sandals and red dangling earrings. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Kate Middleton Looks Striking in a Red Dress for Her Mother's Birthday," 1 Feb. 2019 Its six bedrooms and three bathrooms stretch out horizontally, creating a subtly zig-zagging layout that allows for unexpected seating nooks both inside and out. Liz Stinson, Curbed, "Expansive midcentury modern home asks $770K," 30 July 2018 The flowers themselves were a bright red and yellow, and Mara arranged them in a gentle zig-zag throughout Emma’s wavy hair, almost giving off a waterfall effect. De Elizabeth, Teen Vogue, "Emma Stone Attends "The Favourite" Premiere With Fresh Roses in Her Hair," 29 Sep. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

That four-door touring sedan, with its powerful engine and fantastic leather interior, made for an ideal chariot on our seven-day journey zig-zagging around France. Matt Hranek, Condé Nast Traveler, "Great Drives: Speeding Through the French Countryside in the Audi A8," 25 Sep. 2018 But the best streetwear brands zig when everyone else zags—so, naturally, the third drop from their spring/summer collection has perfect-for-summer suits, ultra-luxe takes on graphic tees and gym shorts, and must-wear footwear that isn’t sneakers. Tyler Watamanuk, GQ, "Five Essential Menswear Drops to Shop This Weekend," 18 May 2018 Most of the trenches that zig zagged throughout this landscape were filled in and plowed over after the war. Nick Stockton, WIRED, "Laser-Shooting Planes Uncover the Horror and Humanity of World War I," 9 July 2018 Jamison relates her life in fits and starts, zig-zagging from her time at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop to her freshman year at Harvard to her graduate study at Yale. Daphne Merkin, The New Republic, "How Leslie Jamison rejected the link between creativity and alcoholism," 5 July 2018 When the ceremony concluded, people flooded to the mural to leave flowers, zig zagging up the walkway as flowers filled up available space on ledges and were threaded through railings. Corlyn Voorhees, OregonLive.com, "Portland marks MAX attack anniversary with ceremony, mural dedication," 26 May 2018 The Backstreet Boys recently made their concert really, really, really wanna zig-a-zig-ah. Karen Mizoguchi, PEOPLE.com, "#SpiceBoys! Backstreet Boys Transform Into Their Favorite Spice Girls Alter Egos During Concert," 8 May 2018 There also would be a planter bed installed at Downer Place to match a rain garden recently built at the Galena Boulevard end, and zig-zag white lights installed the length of the mall, about 20 feet off the ground. Steve Lord, Aurora Beacon-News, "Aurora panel recommends renovations for Water Street Mall," 28 Mar. 2018 The singer/actress threw it way back this Thursday with a photo of herself from 1999 going for a particularly interesting look featuring the '90s trifecta: zig-zag part, peacock tendrils, and hair crystals. Melissa Minton, Allure, "Mandy Moore Had the Most '90s Hairstyle Ever," 3 May 2018

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


1840, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1940, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for zig



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Statistics for zig

Last Updated

15 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for zig

The first known use of zig was in 1840

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with zig

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for zig

Comments on zig

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


something desired as essential

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