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gang1

[gang] /gæŋ/
noun
1.
a group or band:
A gang of boys gathered around the winning pitcher.
2.
a group of youngsters or adolescents who associate closely, often exclusively, for social reasons, especially such a group engaging in delinquent behavior.
3.
a group of people with compatible tastes or mutual interests who gather together for social reasons:
I'm throwing a party for the gang I bowl with.
4.
a group of persons working together; squad; shift:
a gang of laborers.
5.
a group of persons associated for some criminal or other antisocial purpose:
a gang of thieves.
6.
a set of tools, electronic components or circuits, oars, etc., arranged to work together or simultaneously.
7.
a group of identical or related items.
verb (used with object)
8.
to arrange in groups or sets; form into a gang:
to gang illustrations for more economical printing on one sheet.
9.
to attack in a gang.
verb (used without object)
10.
to form or act as a gang:
Cutthroats who gang together hang together.
Verb phrases
11.
gang up on, Informal. (of a number of persons) to unite in opposition to (a person); combine against:
The bigger boys ganged up on the smaller ones in the schoolyard.
Origin
1300-1350
1300-50; Middle English; Old English gang, gong manner of going, way, passage; cognate with Old High German gang, Old Norse gangr, Gothic gagg; cf. gang2
Synonyms
1. company, crowd, crew; party, set, clique, coterie. 4. team.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for ganged up on

gang1

/ɡæŋ/
noun
1.
a group of people who associate together or act as an organized body, esp for criminal or illegal purposes
2.
an organized group of workmen
3.
a herd of buffaloes or elks or a pack of wild dogs
4.
(NZ) a group of shearers who travel to different shearing sheds, shearing, classing, and baling wool
5.
  1. a series of similar tools arranged to work simultaneously in parallel
  2. (as modifier) a gang saw
verb
6.
to form into, become part of, or act as a gang
7.
(transitive) (electronics) to mount (two or more components, such as variable capacitors) on the same shaft, permitting adjustment by a single control
See also gang up
Derived Forms
ganged, adjective
Word Origin
Old English gang journey; related to Old Norse gangr, Old High German gang, Sanskrit jangha foot

gang2

/ɡæŋ/
verb
1.
(Scot) to go
Word Origin
Old English gangan to go1

gang3

/ɡæŋ/
noun
1.
a variant spelling of gangue
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for ganged up on

gang

n.

from Old English gang "a going, journey, way, passage," and Old Norse gangr "a group of men, a set," both from Proto-Germanic *gangaz (cf. Old Saxon, Old Frisian, Danish, Dutch, Old High German, German gang, Old Norse gangr, Gothic gagg "act of going"), from PIE root *ghengh- "to step" (cf. Sanskrit jangha "shank," Avestan zanga- "ankle," Lithuanian zengiu "I stride"). Thus not considered to be related to go.

The sense evolution is probably via meaning "a set of articles that usually are taken together in going" (mid-14c.), especially a set of tools used on the same job. By 1620s this had been extended in nautical speech to mean "a company of workmen," and by 1630s the word was being used, with disapproving overtones, for "any band of persons traveling together." Gangway preserves the original sense of the word, as does gangplank.

v.

1856, from gang (n.). Related: Ganged; ganging. To gang up (on) is first attested 1919.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for ganged up on

gang

Related Terms

black gang


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with ganged up on
In addition to the idiom beginning with gang also see: like gangbusters
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Encyclopedia Article for ganged up on

gang

a group of persons, usually youths, who share a common identity and who generally engage in criminal behaviour. In contrast to the criminal behaviour of other youths, the activities of gangs are characterized by some level of organization and continuity over time. There is no consensus on the exact definition of a gang, however, and scholars have debated whether the definition should expressly include involvement in crime. Some gangs, but not all, have strong leadership, formalized rules, and extensive use of common identifying symbols. Many gangs associate themselves with a particular geographic area or type of crime, and some use graffiti as a form of nonverbal communication

Learn more about gang with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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9
12
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