A man using a spade to dig a trench.
- The definition of a dig is a sarcastic remark or joke, or an archaeological search.
- An example of a dig is a teasing comment made at someone.
- An example of a dig is a search for dinosaur bones in the ground.
- To dig is defined as to break up, remove or unearth, or to discover or find.
- An example of to dig is to move dirt with a shovel.
- An example of to dig is to find evidence for a new theory.
transitive verbdug, dig′ging
- to break and turn up or remove (ground, etc.) with a spade or other tool, or with hands, claws, snout, etc.
- to make (a hole, cellar, one's way, etc.) by or as by doing this
- to uncover and get from the ground or another surface in this way: to dig potatoes, to dig a nail out of a board
- to find out, as by careful study or investigation; unearth: usually with up or out: to dig out the truth
- to thrust, jab, or prod: to dig an elbow into someone's ribs
- to understand
- to approve of or like
- to notice; look at: dig that shirt!
Origin of digMiddle English diggen from Anglo-French an unverified form diguer from Old French digue, dike from Dutch dijk: see dike
- to dig the ground or any surface
- to make a way by or as by digging (through, into, under)
- Informal to work or study hard
- the act of digging
- Informal a thrust, poke, nudge, etc.
- Informal a sarcastic comment; taunt; gibe
- an archaeological excavation or its site
Origin of digshort for diggings, used specif. to refer to the place where a farmer digs, or works the land, usually living in the same area[pl.]Chiefly Brit., Informal living quarters; lodgings
- to dig trenches or foxholes for cover
- to entrench oneself
- to begin to work intensively
- to begin eating
dig in one's heels
- to penetrate by or as by digging
- Informal to work hard at
verbdug, dig·ging, digs
- To break up, turn over, or remove (earth or sand, for example), as with a shovel, spade, or snout, or with claws, paws or hands.
- a. To make or form by removing earth or other material: dig a trench; dug my way out of the snow.b. To prepare (soil) by loosening or cultivating.
- a. To obtain or unearth by digging: dig coal out of a seam; dug potatoes from a field.b. To obtain or find by an action similar to digging: dug a dollar out of his pocket; dug the puck out of the corner.
- To learn or discover by careful research or investigation: dug up the evidence; dug out the real facts.
- To force down and into something; thrust: dug his foot in the ground.
- To poke or prod: dug me in the ribs.
- Sports To strike or redirect (a ball) just before it hits the ground, keeping it in play, as in tennis or volleyball.
- Slang a. To understand fully: Do you dig what I mean?b. To like, enjoy, or appreciate: “They really dig our music and, daddy, I dig swinging for them” ( Louis Armstrong )c. To take notice of: Dig that wild outfit.
- To loosen, turn over, or remove earth or other material.
- To make one's way by or as if by pushing aside or removing material: dug through the files.
- Slang To have understanding: Do you dig?
- A poke or thrust: a sharp dig in the ribs.
- A sarcastic, taunting remark; a gibe.
- An archaeological excavation.
- Sports An act or an instance of digging a ball.
- digs Lodgings.
Origin of digMiddle English diggen perhaps akin to Old French digue dike, trench ; see dhīgw- in Indo-European roots. Our Living Language In its slang sense of “to enjoy,” dig is one of the many words and expressions that come from African American Vernacular English. Like cool, it is first recorded in 1930s jazz circles. While several AAVE expressions that have entered colloquial American English from jazz still have musical associations, many others do not, and quite a few are so ordinary today that their origin in AAVE is not at all obvious. Some are no longer regarded as slang, such as badmouth, cakewalk, nitty-gritty, and main man. Others, like fox (sexy woman), gig, and chump change are still slang or informal. Of course, American slang has received terms from other musical genres besides jazz and rap. For instance, emo was first used for an often “emotional” genre of rock music originating in the 1980s, and has since been extended to mean “angst-filled, melancholy, or sad.”
Andrew Schacht of Australia at the 2007 Beach Volleyball World Championships