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rag 1

a. A scrap of cloth.
b. A piece of cloth used for cleaning, washing, or dusting.
2. rags Threadbare or tattered clothing.
3. Cloth converted to pulp for making paper.
4. A scrap; a fragment.
5. Slang A newspaper, especially one specializing in sensationalism or gossip.
6. The stringy central portion and membranous walls of a citrus fruit.
on the rag Vulgar Slang
1. Menstruating.
2. Irritable; grouchy.

[Middle English ragge, ultimately (probably partly by back-formation from raggi, shaggy, ragged) of Old Norse origin; akin to Old Icelandic rögg, tuft and Swedish ragg, shaggy hair.]

rag 2

tr.v. ragged, rag·ging, rags
1. Slang
a. To criticize or scold (someone).
b. To criticize or complain about (something).
c. To tease or taunt (someone).
2. Chiefly British To play a joke on.
3. Sports In ice hockey, to maintain possession of (the puck) by outmaneuvering opposing players, especially so as to kill a penalty.
n. Chiefly British
A practical joke; a prank.
Phrasal Verb:
rag on
1. To criticize or scold: ragged on me for being late.
2. To complain about (something).
3. To tease or taunt: ragged on their classmate mercilessly.

[Origin unknown.]

rag 3

1. A roofing slate with one rough surface.
2. Chiefly British A coarsely textured rock.

[Origin unknown.]

rag 4

tr.v. ragged, rag·ging, rags
To compose or play (a piece) in ragtime.
A piece written in ragtime.

[Perhaps from ragged.]


pl n
1. torn, old, or shabby clothing
2. (Textiles) cotton or linen cloth waste used in the manufacture of rag paper
3. from rags to riches informal
a. from poverty to great wealth
b. (as modifier): a rags-to-riches tale.
4. glad rags informal best clothes; finery
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(rӕg) noun
a piece of old, torn or worn cloth. I'll polish my bike with this old rag.
ˈragged (ˈrӕgid) adjective
1. dressed in old, worn or torn clothing. a ragged beggar.
2. torn. ragged clothes.
3. rough or uneven; not straight or smooth. a ragged edge.
ˈraggedly adverb
ˈraggedness noun
rags noun plural
old, worn or torn clothes. The beggar was dressed in rags.