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zigzag

[zig-zag] /ˈzɪgˌzæg/
noun
1.
a line, course, or progression characterized by sharp turns first to one side and then to the other.
2.
one of a series of such turns, as in a line or path.
adjective
3.
proceeding or formed in a zigzag:
zigzag stitches.
adverb
4.
with frequent sharp turns from side to side; in a zigzag manner:
The child ran zigzag along the beach.
verb (used with object), zigzagged, zigzagging.
5.
to make (something) zigzag, as in form or course; move or maneuver (something) in a zigzag direction:
They zigzagged their course to confuse the enemy.
verb (used without object), zigzagged, zigzagging.
6.
to proceed in a zigzag line or course.
Origin of zigzag
1705-1715
1705-15; < French; replacing earlier ziczac < French < German zickzack, gradational compound based on Zacke tack1
Related forms
zigzaggedness
[zig-zag-id-nis] /ˈzɪgˌzæg ɪd nɪs/ (Show IPA),
noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for zigzag
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Two more hours took us to Limone, at a jog trot, down a zigzag road, less abrupt in its turns than that on the other side.

  • The voyage of the best ship is a zigzag line of a hundred tacks.

    Essays, First Series Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • Thou turnest back in a zigzag, thou bearest thy bow, thou takest the iron in thy left hand.

    Patriarchal Palestine Archibald Henry Sayce
  • Its zigzag course makes it problematical where it will fall.

    India and the Indians Edward F. Elwin
  • If we are barred from carrying on a zigzag by the mishap to our helm, we can still put a crazy gait on her by using the engines.

    Merchantmen-at-Arms David W. Bone
  • Only by following at some distance could one cut across the zigzag path of the French.

    War and Peace Leo Tolstoy
  • They have gone up the slope in a zigzag manner, and along the crest of the hill.

  • “I know them—zigzag crackers,” said the preacher, somewhat amused.

    The Prairie Chief R.M. Ballantyne
  • His slim brown fingers never stopped in their work of guiding the pen in its zigzag path.

    Personality Plus Edna Ferber
British Dictionary definitions for zigzag

zigzag

/ˈzɪɡˌzæɡ/
noun
1.
a line or course characterized by sharp turns in alternating directions
2.
one of the series of such turns
3.
something having the form of a zigzag
adjective
4.
(usually prenominal) formed in or proceeding in a zigzag
5.
(of sewing machine stitches) produced in a zigzag by a swing needle used for joining stretch fabrics, neatening raw edges, etc
adverb
6.
in a zigzag manner
verb -zags, -zagging, -zagged
7.
to proceed or cause to proceed in a zigzag
8.
(transitive) to form into a zigzag
Derived Forms
zigzaggedness, noun
zigzagger, noun
Word Origin
C18: from French, from German zickzack, from Zacke point, jagged projection; see tack1
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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