lag

When you can't keep up with your fellow marathon runners, you can say that you lag behind them.

The word lag describes a kind of slowness or delay. As a noun, it means a slowing: "The coach was disappointed by the lag in her swimmers' best times that day." When you lag behind someone, you fall back or don't measure up. A student who struggles with math, for example, might say that his grades lag behind his best friend's. In the 1550s, lag meant "last person."

Primary Meanings of lag

1.
vn
hang (back) or fall (behind) in movement, progress, development, etc.
the act of slowing down or falling behind
2.
n
one of several thin slats of wood forming the sides of a barrel or bucket
3.
v
lock up or confine, in or as in a jail
4.
v
cover with lagging to prevent heat loss
5.
v
throw or pitch at a mark, as with coins
Full Definitions of lag
1

v hang (back) or fall (behind) in movement, progress, development, etc.

Synonyms:
dawdle, fall back, fall behind
Types:
drag, drop back, drop behind, get behind, hang back, trail
to lag or linger behind
Type of:
follow
to travel behind, go after, come after

n the act of slowing down or falling behind

Synonyms:
retardation, slowdown
Type of:
delay, holdup
the act of delaying; inactivity resulting in something being put off until a later time

n the time between one event, process, or period and another

Synonyms:
interim, meantime, meanwhile
Types:
interregnum
the time between two reigns, governments, etc.
Type of:
interval, time interval
a definite length of time marked off by two instants
2

n one of several thin slats of wood forming the sides of a barrel or bucket

Synonyms:
stave
Type of:
slat, spline
a thin strip (wood or metal)
3

v lock up or confine, in or as in a jail

Synonyms:
gaol, immure, imprison, incarcerate, jail, jug, put away, put behind bars, remand
Type of:
confine, detain
deprive of freedom; take into confinement
4

v cover with lagging to prevent heat loss

lag pipes”
Type of:
cover
provide with a covering or cause to be covered
5

v throw or pitch at a mark, as with coins

Type of:
flip, pitch, sky, toss
throw or toss with a light motion

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