There are 2 main definitions of bang in English:

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bang 1

Pronunciation: /baNG/


1A sudden loud noise: the door slammed with a bang I heard a series of loud bangs
More example sentences
  • Locals reported hearing two loud bangs before the main explosion.
  • Whether the display is at 2pm or 2am is immaterial to animals, most of whom are terrorised by the sudden and loud bangs.
  • Evacuating the offices, they heard loud bangs and crashing noises in the loft above their office and raised the alarm.
thud, thump, bump, crack, crash, smack, boom, clang, clap, knock, tap, clunk;
stamp, stomp, bam, kaboom, kapow, wham, whump, whomp;
report, explosion, detonation
1.1A sharp blow causing a sudden loud noise: I went to answer a bang on the front door
More example sentences
  • The house did not suffer any structural damage but when the lightning hit the house there was an enormous bang, the fuses blew and the power went.
  • Many of the wrecks around our coasts are either mine or torpedo victims, and either way there is a colossal bang, the ship gets a big chunk blown out of it and the rest lands in a heap nearby.
  • At exactly 1pm, when the ship was about a mile off Beadnell Point, there was a small bang, followed by a colossal explosion which blew off the bow.
1.2A sudden painful blow: a nasty bang on the head
More example sentences
  • She was shunted from the rear on her way to the flag and had a nasty bang into the bank just before the finish line.
  • Whether it was because of the blow or the resulting bang against the column, Suzanne didn't know.
  • Rugby is the all-time leader in biffs and bangs and broken bones, but you don't often die.
blow, knock, thump, bump, hit, smack, bonk, crack, bash, whack, thwack
2 (bangs) North American A fringe of hair cut straight across the forehead: she brushed back her wispy bangs
From a use of the adverb bang to mean 'abruptly'
More example sentences
  • After brushing her hair and letting her bangs fall over her forehead, Jewel went into the kitchen of her apartment.
  • She had a dark and straight hair, with bangs falling over her purple eyes.
  • His jet-black hair was slightly longer than most guys kept their hair; his bangs fell forward in spikes at his forehead.
3 vulgar slang An act of sexual intercourse.
4 Computing , chiefly North American The character “!”.


[with object]
1Strike or put down (something) forcefully and noisily, typically in anger or in order to attract attention: he began to bang the table with his fist Sarah banged the phone down [no object]: someone was banging on the door
More example sentences
  • He returned, and began to noisily bang his spoon on the table to distract Al-Allaf, who ignored him and continued to read out loud.
  • At this point I began banging my head on the table, so I turned the TV off.
  • I begin banging my head against the table top, rattling the plates and cutlery.
hit, strike, beat, thump, hammer, knock, rap, pound, thud, punch, bump, smack, slap, slam, cuff, pummel, buffet, bash, whack, thwack, clobber, clout, clip, wallop, belt, bop, sock, whomp, bust, slug, whale
1.1Come into contact with (something) suddenly and sharply, typically by accident: I banged my head on the low beams [no object]: she banged into some shelves in the darkness
More example sentences
  • Her head came up so quickly that she banged it on the shelf above her.
  • I bolted upright and banged my head on the shelf in the closet.
  • Standing up quickly, she banged her head against the top shelf in the cupboard and cursed.
1.2 [no object] Make a sudden loud noise, typically repeatedly: the shutter was banging in the wind
More example sentences
  • Her boots banged louder and harder and with each step she screamed to herself the words she had been thinking for four days but never uttered.
  • Noise banged through the high-ceilinged, uncarpeted room, matching the din inside her skull.
  • A window lay open, revealing a steel-grey sky beyond the wooden shutters, banging as the wind whistled furiously outside.
go bang, thud, thump, boom, clap, pound, crack, crash, explode, detonate, burst, blow up
1.3(With reference to a door) open or close violently and noisily: [with object and complement]: he banged the kitchen door shut behind him [no object, with complement]: the door banged open and a man staggered out
More example sentences
  • The car door closest to Tyler banged open and a tall girl of 17 stepped out from it.
  • She banged open the door to find them all huddled together in a large group, lounging on the floor, obviously discussing something.
  • She then went straight to Lily's house and banged open the door.
1.4 [no object] (Of a person) move around or do something noisily, especially as an indication of anger or irritation: she was banging around the kitchen
More example sentences
  • As I walk downstairs, I can hear the sound of my mother banging around in the kitchen, muffled by something.
  • It's like a whirlwind version of The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, but with more characters banging about and fewer insights into them.
  • The three women banged and clattered down the stairs and out the door.
1.5(Of a sports player) hit (a ball or a shot) forcefully and successfully: in his second start he banged out two hits
More example sentences
  • Fast bowlers bang the ball in but nothing hits the splice of the bat, there are no edges, shoulders drop and there is an air of lethargy and helplessness in the movement of fielders.
  • McBride singled in a run in the second, banging a ball off the glove of diving third baseman Ken Boyer to score Leon Wagner.
  • When you started your career as a first class cricketer in India, you were a lively fast medium bowler who loved banging the ball in short.
1.6 vulgar slang (Of a man) have sexual intercourse with (a woman).
2North American Cut (hair) in a fringe.


informal, chiefly British
1Exactly: bang in the middle of town
More example sentences
  • Not only is it bang next door to Ben Nevis, the highest mountain in Britain, but it also boasts the country's highest ski run, at 4000 feet.
  • His satisfaction would have been boosted by the fact that his loud celebrations were taking place bang next door to Rotherham's M&S store.
  • It's not just that they think Europe is bang next door to Afghanistan.
1.1Completely: bring your wardrobe bang up to date
More example sentences
  • Presented by Ian Wright, Spy TV brings the hidden-camera format bang up-to-date.
  • Romeo and Juliet's gear conveyed a bang up-to-the-minute approach to love-making while, in truth, it was a bit starchy.
  • We've focused on the rest, which we hope has some value: observations on Sun's integrator strategy and company history that are bang up to date.


1Used to express or imitate the sound of a sudden loud noise: firecrackers went bang Bang, Bang! You’re dead
More example sentences
  • I was casting out my spinner and next thing, bang!
  • I was staring mesmerized at the erratic pfft coming from the brown-paper cylinder when - bang!
  • On November 5, we watched fireworks, but those we hear now are nothing like I remember; they are just bang, bang, bang!
2Used to convey the suddenness of an action or process: the minute something becomes obsolete, bang, it’s gone
More example sentences
  • Even enjoying someone's company becomes loaded with expectation and social convention, fears that this will lead to that, and then, bang!
  • And one particular day when I was particularly tired, she was talking, and my eyes closed, and the next thing was, bang!
  • Get blind drunk, snog, repeat the next week, repeat the next week, bang!



bang for one's (or the) buck

US informal Value for money; performance for cost: this cross between a sports car and a family sedan gave a lot of bang for the buck
More example sentences
  • To me, short films are the best value and most bang for your buck.
  • Cruises still offer a lot of bang for your buck, and with specials as low as $300 or $400 per person, many travelers can save with a sea vacation.
  • So they might as well try to get a lot of bang for their buck and sell it while they can.

bang (or knock or crack) people's heads together

see head.
Example sentences
  • At least with the system that we have, the Commission can bang people's heads together, push people towards compromise and achieve agreement.
  • His first impulse was to play the peacemaker and go bang their heads together.

get a bang out of

North American informal Derive excitement or pleasure from: some people get a bang out of reading that stuff
More example sentences
  • Rufus, obviously getting a bang out of his new found ‘status’, took the opportunity to vent.
  • If I had seen it last year, or even a few months ago, I surely would have got a bang out of it.
  • If someone gets a bang out of seeing the Stooges in color, I say let 'em enjoy themselves.

with a bang

1Abruptly: the remark brought me down to earth with a bang
More example sentences
  • After last week's great win over Camlough Rovers, Bessbrook United were brought down to earth with a bang when Kilkeel Athletic held them to a 3-3 draw.
  • Luckily, London has a canny knack of bringing you back down to earth with a bang and ensuring you don't get unbearably maudlin - take, for instance, yesterday's weepy moment.
  • RI's title rivals, Malton and Norton, fell to earth with a bang following the euphoria they enjoyed after their Tetley's Bitter Vase semi-final win last week.
2Impressively or spectacularly: the occasion went with a bang the day starts with a bang—the steep climb to the mountain top
More example sentences
  • Pyrotechnic specialists Pa-Boom will round off the celebrations with a bang by providing a spectacular display of sound and smoke.
  • Earlier, the Boxing Day card started with a bang as McCoy and Doumen treated spectators to an epic tussle.
  • Since beginning their season with a bang and four successive wins, the Minstermen have seen their form and fortune dip, rise and dip again.

Phrasal verbs


bang away at

informal Do something in a persistent or dogged way: he was banging away at his novel
More example sentences
  • No sleep, no rice for a week, a family wedding and a five km marathon, and I'm here banging away at 11-30 p.m.
  • ‘There is a great deal more to writing for the musical theater than learning notation, the meaning of a diminished seventh, or banging away at a typewriter in some lonely room,’ he acknowledged.
  • The next thing I know he's banging away at the car and it's rocking like hell.

bang something out

1Play music noisily, enthusiastically, and typically unskillfully: Dad was annihilating a Beethoven sonata, banging out notes
More example sentences
  • Composers make gorgeous music, and can bang their moods out on a piano.
  • If people aren't listening to you in music, you don't care, you can just bang it out.
  • They were banging the beat out on the dashboard so hard that the music stopped.
2Produce hurriedly or in great quantities: they weren’t banging out ads in my day the way they are now
More example sentences
  • Ken Loach keeps banging them out, but this is the one I'd pick.
  • Who am I to tell you one way or the other, given that I am banging these words out on a keyboard in my Hong Kong home?
  • He's working on the plane as he travels around the country on his laptop computer banging it out.

bang someone/something up

North American informal Damage or injure someone or something: he banged up his knee
More example sentences
  • Upon being helped from the vehicle, Smathers, whose knees had been banged up in the crash, collapsed to the ground.
  • Smoltz missed all of last year after undergoing elbow surgery, Veras blew out a knee and Jordan was banged up most of the second half.
  • Right now, I banged my knee up pretty badly and I have a back problem.
British informal3.1 Imprison someone: they’ve been banged up for something they didn’t do
More example sentences
  • Awaiting trial, they are banged up at Cook County Jail under the tight regime of crooked prison matron Morton (singer Queen Latifah in the mama of all big mama roles).
  • As quick as you could say ‘Slipper of the Yard’ he was banged up in Belmarsh jail.
  • Last August a mob-handed police raid whisked them off without any warning and banged them up behind the barbed wire of Harmondsworth detention centre at Heathrow.


Mid 16th century: imitative, perhaps of Scandinavian origin; compare with Old Norse bang 'hammering'.

  • This is probably a Scandinavian word, which imitates the sound. The American expression bang for your buck, ‘value for money, return on your investment’, was originally used in the early 1950s of military spending, especially on nuclear weapons. The phrase bang on, meaning ‘exactly right, excellent’, originated in air force slang, and referred to dropping a bomb exactly on target. A nuclear explosion was referred to as the big bang in John Osborne's 1957 play Look Back in Anger: ‘If the big bang does come, and we all get killed off…’. Nowadays the Big Bang is more usually the explosion in which the universe originated. It was originally a term of ridicule, used by the scientist Fred Hoyle (1915–2001) in 1950, but is now the standard term for a respectable theory. In 1986 it was also the name given to the major changes in trading on the Stock Exchange introduced that year.

Words that rhyme with bang

Battambang, bhang, clang, Da Nang, dang, fang, gang, hang, harangue, kiang, Kuomintang, Kweiyang, Laing, Luang Prabang, meringue, Nanchang, Pahang, pang, parang, Penang, prang, Pyongyang, rang, sang, satang, Shang, shebang, Shenyang, slambang, slang, spang, sprang, Sturm und Drang, tang, thang, trepang, twang, vang, whang, Xizang, yang, Zaozhuang
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There are 2 main definitions of bang in English:

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bang 2

Pronunciation: /baNG/


Variant spelling of bhang.
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