There are 3 definitions of lag in English:

lag1

Line breaks: lag
Pronunciation: /laɡ
 
/

verb (lags, lagging, lagged)

[no object]
1Fail to keep up with another or others in movement or development: they waited for Tim who was lagging behind
More example sentences
  • Clearly, New Zealand is lagging behind in failing to encourage more flexible working conditions for employees, especially when their children are young, and that is why I have drafted this bill.
  • The MPs assured the President of continued support in the fight against corruption and poverty adding that if the vices were not eradicated the country will continue lagging behind in development.
  • Other economic development is lagging behind.
Synonyms
fall behind, straggle, fall back, trail (behind), linger, dally, dawdle, hang back, delay, move slowly, loiter, drag one's feet, take one's time, not keep pace, idle, dither, saunter, bring up the rear
informal dilly-dally, shilly-shally
archaic or literary tarry
2 Billiards, North American another term for string (sense 6) of the verb).

noun

Back to top  
1 (also time lag) A period of time between one event and another: a time lag between infection and symptoms
More example sentences
  • Back in the old days, the time lag was considerably longer.
  • And yes, there is a time lag of several days before new entries appear.
  • The latter depends critically on the time lag between environmental change and biotic responses to that environmental change.
2 Physics A retardation in an electric current or movement.
More example sentences
  • With a longitudinal bias field, there was a lag of about 3.5 ns as the magnetization responded to the switching pulse.

Origin

early 16th century (as a noun in the sense 'hindmost person in a game, race, etc.', also 'dregs'): related to the dialect adjective lag (perhaps from a fanciful distortion of last1, or of Scandinavian origin: compare with Norwegian dialect lagga 'go slowly').

Derivatives

lagger

noun

Definition of lag in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day neoteny
Pronunciation: niːˈɒt(ə)ni
noun
retention of juvenile features in the adult animal

There are 3 definitions of lag in English:

lag2

Line breaks: lag
Pronunciation: /laɡ
 
/

verb (lags, lagging, lagged)

[with object]
Enclose or cover (a boiler, pipes, etc.) with material that provides heat insulation: all pipes and tanks in the attic should be lagged (as adjective lagged) a lagged hot-water tank
More example sentences
  • And why is there no mention of the historical significance of asbestos insulation used to lag the steam boilers?
  • You can fit a three-inch insulating jacket and lag the pipes for as little as £10.
  • They advise checking, and lagging all exposed pipes, keeping buildings heated and draining exposed pipes.

Origin

late 19th century: from earlier lag 'piece of insulating cover'.

Derivatives

lagger

noun
More example sentences
  • My job involved preparing the scaffolding and boards that laggers used when replacing old asbestos.
  • I have it very much in mind that Mr Machin and Mr Stages were described by counsel for the employers as peripatetic laggers working at such sites as were available.
  • I also worked close to laggers and scalers who were knocking asbestos lagging off; they were employed by Harland & Wolff.

Definition of lag in:

There are 3 definitions of lag in English:

lag3

Line breaks: lag
Pronunciation: /laɡ
 
/
British informal

noun

A person who has been frequently convicted and sent to prison: both old lags were sentenced to ten years' imprisonment
More example sentences
  • It is partly because of old lags enjoying favours from prison officers that the murderer is at large, four other men having been wrongly convicted.
  • Operational reasons, old lags will recall, is British policespeak for ‘I'm not going to tell you,’ while one million is policespeak for two million.
  • It matters not one jot that old lags like Spedding, the great Paul Thompson and producer Rhett Davies are along for the ride.

verb (lags, lagging, lagged)

[with object] archaic Back to top  
Arrest or send to prison: they were nearly lagged by the constables

Origin

late 16th century (as a verb in the sense 'carry off, steal'): of unknown origin. Current senses date from the 19th century.

Definition of lag in: