There are 2 main definitions of peg in English:

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peg 1

Pronunciation: /peɡ/


1A short cylindrical piece of wood, metal, or plastic, typically tapered at one end, that is used for holding things together, hanging things on, or marking a position.
Example sentences
  • We rode to the lake where I saw 3 more horses tied to a peg stuck in the ground.
  • There he stops, sticking a peg into the ground, and tells his companions to start digging at that spot.
  • Part of the installation process was to pound some pegs into the ground to secure the swing set.
pin, nail, dowel, skewer, spike, rivet, brad, screw, bolt, hook, spigot;
Mountaineering  piton;
Golf  tee
1.1 (also tent peg) A pin or bolt driven into the ground to hold one of the ropes or corners of a tent in position.
Example sentences
  • The action is not unlike pushing a tent peg into the ground.
  • The up-and-down swinging arms are on a plane to drive a tent peg into the ground.
  • Darryl hummed inscrutably and looked back down at the tent peg he was trying to hammer into the ground.
1.2A short pin or cylindrical object in the neck of a stringed musical instrument around which the strings are wound, and which are turned to adjust their tension and so tune the instrument.
Example sentences
  • The Karens play a harp called the t'na, which has five or six strings and is tuned with pegs along the neck of the instrument.
  • He wiped the dirt from it and found he was holding a peg from a musical instrument.
  • I looked up to see that Ty was tuning his own acoustic guitar, methodically turning the pegs and striking the string.
1.3A bung for stoppering a cask.
Example sentences
  • Period pieces show a fire polished finish on the peg of the stopper.
1.4 informal A person’s leg.
Example sentences
  • I'd like Southwell to use his left peg more to drive the ball deep into the opposition's half.
  • Chic is idly caressing the ball with his left peg.
1.5A point or limit on a scale, especially of exchange rates.
Example sentences
  • The peg will limit the powers of the central banks.
  • Under flexible rates, central banks need not use interest rates to preserve an exchange-rate peg.
  • It is obviously not always feasible to operate with tight exchange rate pegs, such as the currency board, and larger economies find it particularly difficult to maintain such constructions.
2chiefly Indian A measure of liquor: have a peg of whiskey
More example sentences
  • He went and told Grierson about the bet that he had with Barua - a peg of whisky, which would knock a mule over.
  • Most drinking scenes in films start with the dialogue ‘you drink two pegs and forget all worries.’
  • Then it's over to flashy dance floors and fast pulsating music that becomes all the more stirring after quaffing a few mugs of chilled beer or a few pegs of booze.
3 informal A strong throw, especially in baseball.
Example sentences
  • Meanwhile, Santa rounded third and headed for home, as the shortstop finally came to his senses and threw a perfect peg to catcher Yunir Garcia, who held the ball in a collision at the plate.
  • Miraculously, Posada managed to find the ball, whirl and throw a perfect peg down to second to impale the Impaler.
  • Conine scored easily, but as Encarnacion headed home, Boone cut off a strong peg from Matsui and fired across the diamond to try to hold Pierre, conceding the run.

verb (pegs, pegging, pegged)

1 [with object] Fix or make fast with a peg or pegs: drape individual plants with nets, pegging down the edges
More example sentences
  • Propagate strawberry plants once the crop is finished by pegging down a couple of runners from your best plants.
  • The lines on the docks were basic things: narrow gauge steel tracks pegged directly to the ties.
2 [with object] Fix (a price, rate, or amount) at a particular level.
Example sentences
  • A student loan starts accruing interest from the moment it is borrowed, but the interest rate is pegged to the retail price index.
  • In response for their support, rates were pegged at their present level for three years in return for keeping its peak-time audience at last year's level.
  • The only saving grace for the moment is that mortgage rates are pegged at reasonable levels, thanks to the EU Bank.
hold down, keep down, fix, set, hold, freeze
2.1 informal, chiefly North American Form a fixed opinion of; categorize: the officer probably has us pegged as anarchists
More example sentences
  • That's another printmaker that has me pegged as a lunatic.
  • You will also take a letter home to your parents that they will sign, or I'll make sure the school board has you pegged as a troublemaker for the rest of your high school career, am I understood?
  • In case anyone has me pegged as a reliable apologist for the pharmaceutical industry, I'd like to direct you to this article in the Sunday New York Times.
3 informal Throw (a ball) hard and low, especially in baseball: the catcher pegs the ball to the first baseman
More example sentences
  • You know sometimes when the pitcher sees the guy on first inching his way towards second and pegs the ball to the first baseman, in a feeble attempt to get the fella out?
  • Molly pegged the ball and it hit her in the face.
  • Jamie backed away and pegged the ball, which Brian missed.



a peg to hang a matter on

Something used as a pretext or occasion for the discussion or treatment of a wider subject.

a square peg in a round hole

A person in a situation unsuited to their abilities or character.
Example sentences
  • She said: ‘I was like a square peg in a round hole.’
  • She was still a square peg in a round hole, trying to get her head around a system, timetables, a rigid curriculum and attitudes that didn't take into consideration her particular needs.
  • Asked to play out of position and he looked like a square peg in a round hole in the first half.

take someone down a peg or two

Make someone realize that they are less talented or important than they think are.
Example sentences
  • Nothing makes for taking you down a peg or two like public humiliation.
  • But in the long run, it's a good hurt, because it takes you down a peg or two and reminds you what you're supposed to be doing in the first place.
  • No matter how good you think you are, horses will always take you down a peg or two.
humble, humiliate, mortify, bring down, shame, embarrass, abash, put someone in their place, chasten, subdue, squash, deflate, make someone eat humble pie
informal show up, settle someone's hash, cut down to size, make someone eat crow

Phrasal verbs


peg away

informal Continue working hard at or trying to achieve something, especially over a long period.
Example sentences
  • The bottom of their post must have been square, but we kept pegging away and in the second half we got the goal and I think we deserved to share the points.
  • In contrast, they kept pegging away and, with cooler finishing and a dash of the luck that has deserted them in recent weeks, that 50-point barrier would now be breachable at the weekend.
  • Poppleton kept pegging away and deservedly equalised when a through ball found Christopher Green, who gave Harry Wright in the Real Cliffe goal no chance.

peg out

1 informal, chiefly British Die.
Example sentences
  • The man grinding the flour suggested this activity was healthier than a modern gym workout (not that healthy, we decided: half of all Viking women pegged out at 35).
  • After such a marathon 64 years on top, it was scarcely surprising when the Empress of India finally pegged out almost 100 years ago today.
  • Chekhov pegged out while taking a cure in Badenweiler.
2Score the winning point at cribbage.
Example sentences
  • It is not necessary to reach 121 exactly - you can peg out by scoring 2 more when you were on 120 and still win.
3 Croquet Hit the peg with the ball as the final stroke in a game.

peg something out

Mark the boundaries of an area of land: I went out to peg out our assembly area
More example sentences
  • It is essential the site is pegged out before the planning committee visits it, to eliminate any confusion.
  • Rex Watkins the siting coordinator said most of the site had been pegged out and numbered and he is confident the registration process will go smoothly.
  • The new kitchen is pegged out and a safety fence is going up tomorrow!


Late Middle English: probably of Low German origin; compare with Dutch dialect peg 'plug, peg'. The verb dates from the mid 16th century.

Words that rhyme with peg

beg, cleg, egg, Eigg, Greg, keg, leg, Meg, skeg, teg, yegg

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: peg

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There are 2 main definitions of peg in English:

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For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: PEG

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