hold the bag


a container or receptacle of leather, plastic, cloth, paper, etc., capable of being closed at the mouth; pouch.
something resembling or suggesting such a receptacle.
a suitcase or other portable container for carrying articles, as in traveling.
a purse or moneybag.
the amount or quantity a bag can hold.
any of various measures of capacity.
a sac, as in an animal body.
an udder.
Slang. a small glassine or cellophane envelope containing a narcotic drug or a mixture of narcotics.
something hanging in a loose, pouchlike manner, as skin or cloth; a baggy part: He had bags under his eyes from lack of sleep.
Baseball. base1 ( def 8b ).
Hunting. the amount of game taken, especially by one hunter in one hunting trip or over a specified period.
a person's avocation, hobby, major interest, or obsession: Jazz isn't my bag.
a person's mood or frame of mind: The boss is in a mean bag today.
an environment, condition, or situation.
Informal. plenty; much; many (usually followed by of ): bags of time; bags of money.
Slang. trousers.
verb (used without object), bagged, bagging.
to swell or bulge: A stiff breeze made the sails bag out.
to hang loosely like an empty bag: His socks bagged at the ankles.
to pack groceries or other items into a bag.
verb (used with object), bagged, bagging.
to cause to swell or bulge; distend: The wind bagged the curtain.
to put into a bag.
Informal. to kill or catch, as in hunting: I bagged my first deer when I was a teenager.
Theater, clew ( def 9a ).
bags!, British Slang. (used to lay first claim to something): Bags it! Bags, I go first!
Slang. to quit, abandon, or skip: I bagged my math class today. We'd better bag the deal. I was working too hard so I decided to bag it.
bag and baggage,
with all one's personal property: When they went to collect the rent, they found he had left, bag and baggage.
completely, totally: The equipment had disappeared, bag and baggage, without even the slightest trace.
bag of bones, an emaciated person or animal.
bag of tricks, a supply of expedient resources; stratagems: Maybe they will finally be honest with us, once they've run through their bag of tricks.
hold the bag, Informal. to be forced to bear the entire blame, responsibility, or loss that was to have been shared: His accomplices flew to South America on news of the theft and left him holding the bag.
in the bag, Informal. virtually certain; assured; definite: Her promotion is in the bag. The sale of the house is in the bag.
old bag, Slang. an unattractive, often slatternly woman: a gossipy old bag.

1200–50; 1920–25 for def 28; Middle English bagge < Old Norse baggi pack, bundle

baglike, adjective
unbagged, adjective

bag, sac, sack, sacque.

1. Although bag and sack are both used everywhere throughout the U.S., the more commonly used word in the North Midland U.S. is bag and in the South Midland is sack.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
bag (bæɡ)
1.  a flexible container with an opening at one end
2.  Also called: bagful the contents of or amount contained in such a container
3.  any of various measures of quantity, such as a bag containing 1 hundredweight of coal
4.  a piece of portable luggage
5.  short for handbag
6.  anything that hangs loosely, sags, or is shaped like a bag, such as a loose fold of skin under the eyes or the bulging part of a sail
7.  any pouch or sac forming part of the body of an animal, esp the udder of a cow
8.  hunting the quantity of quarry taken in a single hunting trip or by a single hunter
9.  derogatory, slang an ugly or bad-tempered woman (often in the phrase old bag)
10.  slang a measure of marijuana, heroin, etc, in folded paper
11.  slang a person's particular taste, field of skill, interest, activity, etc: blues is his bag
12.  informal bag and baggage
 a.  with all one's belongings
 b.  entirely
13.  a bag of bones a lean creature
14.  slang in the bag almost assured of succeeding or being obtained
15.  informal the bag of tricks, the whole bag of tricks every device; everything
vb , bags, bagging, bagged
16.  (tr) to put into a bag
17.  to bulge or cause to bulge; swell
18.  (tr) to capture or kill, as in hunting
19.  (tr) to catch, seize, or steal
20.  (intr) to hang loosely; sag
21.  (tr) to achieve or accomplish: she bagged seven birdies
22.  informal (Brit) (tr) to reserve or secure the right to do or to have something: he bagged the best chair
23.  slang (Austral) (tr) to criticize; disparage
[C13: probably from Old Norse baggi; related to Old French bague bundle, pack, Medieval Latin baga chest, sack, Flemish bagge]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

early 13c., bagge, from O.N. baggi or a similar Scandinavian source, perhaps ultimately of Celtic origin. Disparaging slang for "woman" dates from 1924 (though various specialized senses of this are much older). Meaning "person's area of interest or expertise" is 1964, from Black Eng. slang, from jazz
sense of "category," probably via notion of putting something in a bag. To be left holding the bag (and presumably nothing else), "cheated, swindled" is attested by 1793. Many fig. senses are from the notion of the game bag (late 15c.) into which the product of the hunt was placed; e.g. the verb meaning "to kill game" (1814) and its colloquial extension to "catch, seize, steal" (1818).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

bag (bāg)

  1. An anatomical sac or pouch, such as the udder of a cow.

  2. A container of flexible material, such as paper, plastic, or leather, that is used for carrying or storing items.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Abbreviations & Acronyms
busting a gut [laughing]
Bachelor of Agriculture
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Bible Dictionary

Bag definition

(1.) A pocket of a cone-like shape in which Naaman bound two pieces of silver for Gehazi (2 Kings 5:23). The same Hebrew word occurs elsewhere only in Isa. 3:22, where it is rendered "crisping-pins," but denotes the reticules (or as R.V., "satchels") carried by Hebrew women. (2.) Another word (kees) so rendered means a bag for carrying weights (Deut. 25:13; Prov. 16:11; Micah 6:11). It also denotes a purse (Prov. 1:14) and a cup (23:31). (3.) Another word rendered "bag" in 1 Sam. 17:40 is rendered "sack" in Gen. 42:25; and in 1 Sam. 9:7; 21:5 "vessel," or wallet for carrying food. (4.) The word rendered in the Authorized Version "bags," in which the priests bound up the money contributed for the restoration of the temple (2 Kings 12:10), is also rendered "bundle" (Gen. 42:35; 1 Sam. 25:29). It denotes bags used by travellers for carrying money during a journey (Prov. 7:20; Hag. 1:6). (5.) The "bag" of Judas was a small box (John 12:6; 13:29).

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

hold the bag

see leave holding the bag.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Idioms & Phrases
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