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pig (pĭg)
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n.
1.
a. Any of various mammals of the family Suidae, having short legs, hooves with two weight-bearing toes, bristly hair, and a cartilaginous snout used for digging, including the domesticated hog (Sus scrofa subsp. domestica syn. S. domesticus) and wild species such as the bushpig.
b. A domesticated hog, especially when weighing less than 54 kilograms (120 pounds).
c. The edible parts of one of these mammals.
2.
a. Informal A person regarded as being piglike, greedy, or disgusting.
b. Derogatory Slang A police officer.
c. Slang A member of the social or political establishment, especially one holding sexist or racist views.
3.
a. A crude block of metal, chiefly iron or lead, poured from a smelting furnace.
b. A mold in which such metal is cast.
c. Pig iron.
intr.v. pigged, pig·ging, pigs
To give birth to pigs; farrow.
Phrasal Verb:
pig out Slang
To eat ravenously; gorge oneself: pigged out on cake.
Idioms:
in a pig's eye Slang
Under no condition; never.
pig in a poke
Something that is offered in a manner that conceals its true nature or value.
pig it Slang
To live in a piglike fashion.

[Middle English pigge, young pig, probably from Old English *picga (attested in the compound picbred, acorn (literally, “pig-bread,” since acorn mast was traditionally an important forage food for domestic swine) : pic-, pig + brēad, morsel, bread); probably akin to Low German Bigg and Middle Dutch bagge, pogge, piglet, young pig, all ultimately of unknown origin.]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 

Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices

    Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:

    Indo-European Roots

    Semitic Roots

    The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.

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