Definition of hang in English:

hang

verb

  • 1Suspend or be suspended from above with the lower part dangling free.

    with object ‘that's where people are supposed to hang their washing’
    no object ‘he stood swaying, his arms hanging limply by his sides’
    • ‘Above it all, dark shapes hang suspended, almost motionless, swaying with the breeze.’
    • ‘Different colored paper lanterns hung overhead, not really doing much to light up the place but looking very pretty all the same.’
    • ‘I clambered out onto the tree limb below my dorm window and hanging from the lowest branch dropped to the ground.’
    • ‘I let out a sigh and followed her up, my arms hanging limply at my sides.’
    • ‘During these first few minutes of the dance, he had been letting his arms hang limply at his sides.’
    • ‘A lantern hung from the pointed roof, and light could be seen from the cracks between the wood boards.’
    • ‘The lanterns hang from trees like giant pods.’
    • ‘Many restaurants have smoking and non-smoking areas separated only with a sign hanging from the ceiling.’
    • ‘From the side, you can check for the correct posture: spine straight but tilted, arms hanging freely and knees slightly flexed.’
    • ‘There is a massive tree in front of the house and an old tyre swing hangs from its ancient arms.’
    • ‘Eddie fell backwards, stumbling over the edge of the trail, but caught on with one hand, perilously hanging over the precipice.’
    • ‘Let your arms hang naturally and freely, and you'll be fine.’
    • ‘The large wooden gates are adorned with red hearts and streamers and white paper doves have been hung from the trees.’
    • ‘It also had a hood with a cute little pom-pom hanging off the strings made to adjust the hood.’
    • ‘A rusted ceiling fan hangs from the remains of the roof.’
    • ‘A gigantic chandelier hangs down from the ceiling, right above her head.’
    • ‘Overhead, coloured banners hung from wooden rafters.’
    • ‘His arms hung down limply, one over the edge of the couch.’
    • ‘She is clutching at the grass, precariously hanging over the cliff and screaming as crumbling rocks fall to the water below.’
    • ‘Four banners hang in the front of the theater above the hardwood stage.’
    be suspended, hang down, be pendent, dangle, swing, sway
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Attach or be attached to a hook on a wall.
      with object ‘we could just hang the pictures on the walls’
      no object ‘the room in which the pictures will hang’
      • ‘But her mother is so proud of what her daughter has done that the calendar will be hanging from her wall next year, and Ellie's grandmother has also ordered a copy.’
      • ‘Now there is a new band portrait hanging next to the original on the clubhouse wall.’
      • ‘To the uninitiated, they're just a collection of yellowing maps hung up on the walls.’
      • ‘The resulting painting still hangs on the living room wall.’
      • ‘Tammy and Greg's wedding picture was framed and hung perfectly on the wall.’
      • ‘Against one wall Osborn has hung three modest watercolour heads of a boy.’
      • ‘Even now, a map of France still hangs from his bedroom wall.’
      • ‘A tiger rug lay on the floor and a small painting hung over the head of the bed.’
      • ‘His photo hangs from a wall of the room where Neesha, her husband and their two children eat and sleep.’
      • ‘The show is called Manet Face to Face, which explains the exciting way in which these two pictures are hung, on opposite walls, with you caught in the crossfire.’
      • ‘An animal skin rug covered the floor and a moose's head hung from the wall.’
      • ‘Inside, the bar features a riot of décor: A stuffed swordfish hangs from the wall.’
      • ‘Inside, dried hops and brasses hang from the rural-themed walls and a central bar acts serves both the games room and main lounge.’
      • ‘Large pictures of fifties stars hung along the walls and a song from the musical Grease played on the jukebox in the corner.’
      • ‘She sighed as she stole a single glance at the picture hanging from the wall.’
      • ‘They looked at everything from the pictures hung neatly on the wall, to the conditions of the easy chairs and beds.’
      • ‘The halls had a slight musty odor and there were spots where pictures used to hang from the walls.’
      • ‘I turned my head sideways and caught a glimpse at the long mirror hanging in my closet.’
      • ‘Honour was done to the two founders, Drinkwater and Flyers, whose portraits were hung in the reading rooms.’
      • ‘It is equipped with a kitchen, bathroom and lounge, where framed posters of his books hang proudly on the walls.’
      put up, fix, attach, affix, fasten, post, display, suspend, stick up, pin up, tack up, nail up, put on a hook
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2be hung with Be adorned with (pictures or other decorations)
      ‘the walls of her hall were hung with examples of her work’
      • ‘This is a world that, despite its cheap furniture, dingy apartments and grubby walls hung with fading pictures, is still full of desires and ideals.’
      • ‘His walls were hung with pictures of himself.’
      • ‘Stateley and bright, the entire hall was hung with banners, and in the right-hand corner of the room musicians played on hand-drum, pipe and lute, creating an atmosphere both festive and patriotic.’
      • ‘The walls of his apartment were hung with a splendid collection of 19 th- and 20 th-century French drawings, which I much admired to his evident satisfaction.’
      • ‘The place is neat and tidy, with tiled tables near the front windows, more tables in a sunken seating area at the back, and walls hung with paintings by local artists.’
      • ‘The walls were hung with ancient tapestries and portraits, some of which she could identify as Old Masters.’
      • ‘the whole garden was covered over and divided into large rooms which were hung with draperies of rose-coloured muslin, enormous ornamental mirrors and numerous chandeliers and perfumed with every kind of flower.’
      • ‘Rich scarlet carpets covered the floor, and the high stone walls were hung with gorgeous tapestries embroidered with gold thread on satin and silk of every colour in the spectrum.’
      • ‘The floors were painted in the same way, and the walls were hung with elaborate tapestries that depicted various gentlemen or ladies who had been, most likely, of the influential sort.’
      • ‘When it opened in 1904 the theatre's foyer was hung with portraits by John Butler Yeats and since that time the collection has grown to over sixty works by several renowned artists.’
      • ‘The floor, ceiling and walls were made entirely out of stone but the walls were hung with beautiful tapestries and the floor was covered with a thick green rug.’
      • ‘The building is Grade II listed, was built in 1835 in the style of an Italian villa and is hung with some of the finest works of art in Yorkshire.’
      • ‘The Grand Vestibule is hung with suits of armour and displays of old weaponry.’
      • ‘The walls were hung with huge watercolor reproductions of paintings by Raphael.’
      • ‘The walls were hung with tapestries from earlier centuries.’
      • ‘The walls were hung with dark but richly coloured tapestries depicting scenes of legend.’
      • ‘The front hall was hung with magnificent tapestries.’
      • ‘Ceaucescu, for example, lived in a forty-room palace where walls were hung with artwork taken from churches and museums.’
      • ‘The Tea Room is hung with silks embroidered with the initials of the Emperor.’
      • ‘The room was hung with pictures of pastoral scenes and paintings inspired by the cult of Isis, who is symbolized by a cow.’
      decorate, adorn, drape, festoon, deck out, trick out, bedeck, array, furnish, garland, swathe, cover, ornament
      View synonyms
    3. 1.3 Attach or be attached so as to allow free movement about the point of attachment.
      with object ‘a long time was spent hanging a couple of doors’
      no object, with complement ‘she just sat with her mouth hanging open’
      • ‘Learning how to hang a window is a project that depends on a number of factors, including whether or not the window is to be installed in new construction or an existing wall.’
      • ‘The doors had been hung perfectly, each one swinging effortlessly and noiselessly and fitting perfectly into its frame.’
      • ‘He noticed that the pendulums of the two suspended clocks, hanging side by side from a common support, were swinging together.’
      • ‘Hanging a door correctly is one of the most satisfying jobs in the home improvement world, but it's often the most challenging.’
      • ‘If you hang the gate as you are suggesting it will sag from the hinges and eventually just scrape on the floor.’
      • ‘The panels are also more rigid, making them easier to carry and hang.’
    4. 1.4with object Attach (meat or game) to a hook and leave it until dry, tender, or high.
      ‘venison needs to be hung for a minimum of seven days’
      • ‘We are one of the few farm shops that source our meat locally, hang it in our own cold room and butcher it on site to customers' requirements.’
      • ‘You could see where the old range had been and the rings from which the hunks of meat would have been hung.’
      • ‘Their Aberdeen Angus feed on rich grass and organic hay, and the meat is hung for a minimum of 14 days to ensure optimum taste.’
      • ‘There is game and meat to hang, lemon tarts to be made.’
      • ‘I had worried that the dressing would be formidably strong, but the meat had been hung for a lengthy period and was far more gamey than that used by most oriental restaurants.’
      • ‘The meat still needs to be properly hung to improve texture and flavour, but it doesn't require marinades and all manner of tricks to make it edible.’
      • ‘Red meat is hung for at least 28 days, making for a memorable steak.’
      • ‘The flavour could be deeper if the meat was hung for longer.’
      • ‘It seemed like the normal hooks that would have been used by the butcher to hang meat had been modified or replaced with massive fish hooks.’
      • ‘The interior is equipped with rows of nails or poles suspended from the rafters for hanging the cured hams.’
      • ‘Anyone who can tell you how long to hang game, or any meat, unless you are using a butcher's chiller, is either a liar or a prophet.’
      • ‘He has his own herd of beasts and hangs the meat longer than anyone I know.’
      • ‘It was claimed that before they were really ready for cooking, grouse should be hung until maggots dropped out of them.’
      • ‘All the beef is locally sourced and hung in a cold house on site for up to six weeks before being butchered.’
      • ‘Think of the money to be made renting out basements to hang meat and transforming kitchens into dark rooms.’
      • ‘Now hang the meat in a cool, well ventilated place for another day or two.’
      • ‘I raise and hang my own beef, from Devon Ruby cattle, here on my small Dorset farm.’
      • ‘There Angus and Jimmy would skin and hang the carcass.’
    5. 1.5no object, with adverbial (of fabric or a garment) fall or drape from a fixed point in a specified way.
      ‘this blend of silk and wool hangs well and resists creases’
      • ‘Letting garments out is more difficult because you usually need to open the seams so the garment can hang properly on your body.’
      • ‘He nodded and leaned against the counter, his gray shirt hung loosely on his muscular frame.’
      • ‘The purpose of shoulder pads is to square out your shoulders and to help your suit hang properly.’
      • ‘A maroon velvety dress hung well on her shoulders.’
      • ‘As you can see from the photos the suede skirt hangs softly almost in pleats, and the wool version shows the godet detail quite well.’
      • ‘Lining makes the vest hang better over your other clothes and also makes it easier to slip on and off.’
      • ‘He places his arms into a jacket obviously tailored for someone else, it hangs loosely, reaching almost to his knees.’
      • ‘The white, gray, and green clothing hung extremely loosely on her small body but she was content with it.’
      • ‘A tailored jacket hung elegantly from his broad shoulders, giving him a debonair look.’
      • ‘She made a rather scrawny boy and Bryson's garments hung loosely on her form, but she would pass.’
      • ‘He was similarly dressed except that his shirt hung more loosely over his body.’
      • ‘Nighy looks older than his years, with a tall, angular frame on which a dark blue suit hangs loosely as if on a clothes horse.’
      • ‘The dress hung loosely on me, except the bodice, which was very tight.’
      • ‘His red, cap-sleeved shirt hung loosely around his waist, covering the top of his pants.’
      • ‘A dark leather jacket hung loosely off a pair of wide shoulders.’
      • ‘His grey, three piece suit hung loosely from his shoulders as if it had originally been tailored for a much larger man.’
      • ‘If you simply lay the pattern pieces anywhere on the fabric, ignoring the grain-lines, the finished garment will not hang right.’
      • ‘The soft fabric hung perfectly from Penelope's curves and the bright white complemented her dark skin.’
      • ‘A black, grungy trench coat hung loosely over his lanky frame, and his face was hidden in the darkness under a fedora hat.’
      • ‘Not only does the drainpipe leg hang badly with most footwear but it emphasises the fuller hips and rear.’
    6. 1.6with object Paste (wallpaper) to a wall.
      ‘if you're using lining paper, hang it horizontally’
      • ‘If you feel there will be no strikethrough or bleeding issues, hang your new paper.’
      • ‘Walls can also be hung with textured papers and then painted.’
      • ‘A common, and drastic, mistake in hanging wallpaper is to hang it out of plumb.’
      • ‘Members of this association must be craftsmen and women who hang paper for a living.’
      • ‘Wallpaper can be hung directly over old wallpaper, however many papers will fall off if you put a heavy wet sheet on top of them.’
      • ‘The introduction of papering techniques whereby the wall rather than the paper is pasted has made hanging the wallpaper less fraught with peril than it used to be.’
      • ‘This means that users can paste the wall rather than the paper, and hang the wallpaper dry from the roll.’
      • ‘What type of plywood should I use, and what preparation steps should occur before hanging any paper?’
      • ‘Yes, the carpets were a thick purple plush and the walls were hung with a complex patterned wallpaper, but there was something about the atmosphere that seemed somewhat laid-back compared to the grandeur of outside.’
      • ‘Today's Ruby left me pondering just how many people does it take to hang one piece of wallpaper?’
      • ‘Of course, next comes the attempt to hang lining paper before we repaint.’
      • ‘Most residential wallcoverings are now hung by consumers such as you.’
      • ‘Online users can find out how to care for houseplants or how to hang wallpaper.’
      • ‘You need to be able to hang your wallpaper plumb, even if the corners are not.’
      • ‘It is best to seal the concrete with a waterproof sealer before applying a wallcovering primer and hanging the wallcovering.’
      • ‘If you are not sure whether your walls need sizing or not, it is best to do it because it is quick and makes hanging wallpaper easier.’
      • ‘Simply hang your paper so that it is aligned with the adjacent piece and loosely press it against the window trim.’
      • ‘Off in the dining room Graham was sanding down the walls in hope that he'll be able to paint them straight rather than hang lining paper first.’
      • ‘If the wallpaper to be hung has a pattern, find out what type of pattern match it has.’
      • ‘It took all in all 4 days to do it, 2 days hanging wallpaper and 2 days for the preparations.’
      paste up, glue on, stick up, fasten on, fix on, attach
      View synonyms
  • 2with object Kill (someone) by tying a rope attached from above around their neck and removing the support from beneath them (often used as a form of capital punishment)

    ‘he was hanged for murder’
    ‘she hanged herself in her cell’
    • ‘Three innocent people were hanged for their alleged part in his murder.’
    • ‘The last execution here took place in 1997 when eight prisoners were hanged.’
    • ‘The last time a person was hanged in South Australia was 1964.’
    • ‘Her 25-year-old lorry driver husband was hanged for the murder of the child.’
    • ‘In 1667 three men were hanged at York for the murder of a Wakefield woman suspected of bewitching a man.’
    • ‘The government revealed recently, only in reply to a question in parliament, that 340 people were hanged between 1991 and 2000.’
    • ‘In August, he was hanged on Gallows Hill, one of 19 people executed for witchcraft.’
    • ‘India's last execution was in 1995, when an auto-rickshaw driver convicted in the serial murders of prostitutes was hanged.’
    • ‘The most the state can do to you is lock you away for the rest of your life, or hang you by the neck until you are dead.’
    • ‘The revelations silenced most supporters and he was hanged in Pentonville prison on 3 August 1916 with scarcely a murmur of protest.’
    • ‘Between October 1952 and November 1954, 756 rebels were hanged, most for offences less than murder.’
    • ‘She was hanged three weeks later despite public uproar and thousands of people demonstrating in the street.’
    • ‘Although it does seem like a dim and distant memory now, I still remember people being hanged in Britain during my lifetime.’
    • ‘Three days after he was hanged, public executions were abolished under the Capital Amendment Act of May 29th 1868.’
    • ‘He was grabbed from the arresting officer by a gang of masked men who tied a rope around his neck and hanged him.’
    • ‘The kidnappers drove to an abandoned farmhouse on the outskirts of the city where they tied a rope around the neck of their captive and hanged him from a locust tree.’
    • ‘In 1903, he was hanged for the murder of a rancher's 15-year-old son, a crime he most likely did not commit.’
    • ‘For many New Englanders, capital punishment relates more to the era of witches being hanged than to the current day.’
    • ‘Students were publicly hanged every year following 1978, while exiled opponents were assassinated.’
    • ‘His wife told the jury she thought she was going to die after he wrapped electric cable around her neck, pulled it tight and then tried to hang her.’
    execute by hanging, hang by the neck, send to the gallows, send to the gibbet, send to the scaffold, gibbet, put to death
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1no object Be killed by hanging.
      ‘both men were sentenced to hang’
      • ‘She was tried, and sentenced to hang for treasonous crimes.’
      • ‘They just sentenced this woman to hang for killing her boyfriend, who she says routinely abused her.’
      • ‘On that charge he was found guilty and sentenced to hang by the Tokyo Trials for war crimes.’
      • ‘Wilkes had stabbed Christie while resisting arrest, for which he was indicted, tried, convicted, and sentenced to hang.’
      • ‘There was one man a while back who had murdered and raped a nine year old girl who seemed certain to hang, but a mob invaded his prison and killed him themselves.’
      • ‘Billy is convicted and sentenced to hang at dawn.’
      • ‘His trial ended in conviction, and he was sentenced to hang, but Boyington heatedly maintained his innocence to the very gallows.’
      • ‘Cragh had been captured by the men of William de Briouze, Lord of Gower, and sentenced by him to hang as a rebel and a homicide.’
      • ‘He was sentenced to hang for the murder of his step son.’
      • ‘In 1945, he was sentenced to hang for treason.’
      • ‘The independent senator had also not supported the death penalty when the two men were initially sentenced to hang for the crime.’
      • ‘He became the last man sentenced to hang by Bedford Assizes and was executed in the town's prison on April 4, 1962.’
      • ‘He was sentenced to hang until dead on September 17, 1858.’
      • ‘He was found guilty and sentenced to hang - four days before Christmas.’
      • ‘Sentenced to hang for piracy, William Fly spoke from the gallows to a large crowd, telling captains to pay sailors their wages or take as a warning his murder of a captain.’
      • ‘He was yesterday sentenced to hang for the 2001 murder of his wife and young son.’
      • ‘He was sentenced to hang but cheated the gallows.’
      execute by hanging, hang by the neck, send to the gallows, send to the gibbet, send to the scaffold, gibbet, put to death
      View synonyms
    2. 2.2dated Used in expressions as a mild oath.
      no object ‘they could all go hang’
      with object ‘I'm hanged if I know’
      • ‘I wear whatever I want whenever I want and they can all go hang.’
      • ‘Let the whingers go hang - I still fancy seeing the Dome for myself.’
      • ‘At the country house, David tells the O'Briens that he's hanged if he knows what's got into Beryl.’
      • ‘I’m hanged if I know what to say when I get there.’
      • ‘They are so preoccupied with puffing up their own image and self-esteem that everything else just has to go hang.’
      • ‘So I let the world go hang today, I shall go to my bed good and early, and look forward with reasonable certainty to a better day tomorrow.’
  • 3no object, with adverbial of place Remain static in the air.

    ‘a black pall of smoke hung over Valletta’
    • ‘A massive plume of smoke was hanging over the city, but the precise location or cause of the blast was not immediately known.’
    • ‘But now you've got a black cloud hanging over your head.’
    • ‘To the south, a billowing black cloud of smoke was hanging ominously over the city.’
    • ‘I can't see the fire but smoke hangs thinly everywhere especially around the lights.’
    • ‘Even with the cooler weather and some rain, acrid smoke still hangs over the most ravaged areas.’
    • ‘On June 1, 1921 the smoke hung like a grey, acrid cloud over Greenwood.’
    • ‘Large, puffy clouds hung in the air and seagulls flew around in the pale blue sky.’
    • ‘A dense fug of tobacco smoke hangs over them as they furiously puff away.’
    • ‘I watched her drag on her cigarette, the smoke hanging between us.’
    • ‘The smoke hung like a heavy veil over the doorway, stinging his nostrils as he stepped through it.’
    • ‘Real smoke hangs over the audience, clouding our vision and our senses.’
    • ‘The mist hanging just above the buildings softened the colors and lowered the parameters of the scene to the sidewalks and the strolling hordes.’
    • ‘Smoke hung thickly all around, like a dense fog, only more suffocating.’
    • ‘The Gig hall was dark, and the air was thick and heavy with the stale cigarette smoke that hung there.’
    • ‘Another rocket is fired, and the smoke hangs ominously over the square.’
    • ‘A cloud of acrid smoke is hanging over the city and on the roads all the shops are closed for fear of rioting.’
    • ‘The cigarette smoke hung like a thick bluish white haze throughout the room.’
    • ‘Shrugging, he pushed open the door to the bar and almost choked on the smoke that hung thickly in the air.’
    • ‘She gazed down the steep face at the mist which still hung imposingly below them.’
    • ‘People dance on the beach as smoke hangs dramatically in the air.’
    hover, float, drift, linger, remain static, be suspended, be poised
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    1. 3.1 Be present or imminent, especially oppressively or threateningly.
      ‘a sense of dread hung over him for days’
      • ‘With the threat of relegation hanging over both teams, the early exchanges were nervy, but evenly-matched.’
      • ‘But if you're going to break up, do it now, before the summer, that way you won't have this hanging over you any longer than you have to.’
      • ‘A threat now hangs over the future of both ships.’
      • ‘Although he may feel this possibility is presently hanging over him, Jefferies appears prepared to allow his partnership with Boyd the necessary time to develop.’
      • ‘And here the threat of war still hangs very, very heavy in the air.’
      • ‘A real threat is hanging over the future of European Union funding for the Common Agricultural Policy, a member of the European Parliament has warned.’
      • ‘However at the time, all I wanted to do was to make a life for myself and my family without the threat of deportation hanging over our heads each and every six months.’
      • ‘The threat of closure hangs over Cavendish Square Post Office, which has issued a ‘use it or lose it’ ultimatum to its customers.’
      • ‘I am writing to alert your readers to the threat which still hangs over the Kew Bridge area.’
      • ‘With a shadow of imminent disaster hanging over their homeland, they now appear to be the lucky ones.’
      • ‘Management met with unions last week to discuss the job cuts, with the threat of strike action hanging over the bank if it insists on compulsory redundancies.’
      • ‘The threat of redundancy now hangs over many agents so most are more than willing to haggle.’
      • ‘He said: ‘I can't really remember working in the pit without the threat of redundancy hanging over me.’’
      • ‘Downing Street urged firefighters to call off the next planned strike so discussions could take place without the threat of industrial action hanging over them.’
      • ‘But governors are pleading for a breathing space to try to build up numbers, which they fear will not happen with the threat of closure hanging over the school.’
      • ‘It is impossible to be sanguine about the state of international tension that hangs so threateningly over us.’
      • ‘It was also obvious that the threatened closure that still hangs over the school was never far from their thoughts.’
      • ‘Last night's episode hung oppressively in the air between them.’
      • ‘It's a big, real threat hanging over their heads.’
      • ‘Despite the threat of closure hanging over the unit for the past 18 months, the number of births and pregnant women using the unit has increased.’
  • 4Computing
    Come or cause to come unexpectedly to a state in which no further operations can be carried out.

    no object ‘the machine has hung’
    with object ‘it kept hanging my computer’
    • ‘Click on help, a browser window opens, click on connect to Ethernet, and it hangs forever.’
    • ‘Upon reboot, however, the system hung at the Windows startup screen.’
    • ‘This article has all you need to know about issues with internal modems that may hang your system.’
    • ‘If the installation hangs, you have to either delete the installed folder or reboot.’
    • ‘An erratically fluctuating power supply can wreak havoc on any system and may cause it to hang or shut down spontaneously.’
  • 5North American informal no object Spend time relaxing or enjoying oneself.

    ‘I guess I wasn't cool enough to hang with them anymore’
    ‘we'll be walking along just hanging, chilling’
    • ‘I turned away from him and took out a cigarette that I slipped from my mom, I have never smoked, but hanging with this guy made you want to.’
    • ‘Well I'm Faye; do you wanna come hang with us?’
    • ‘As the night progressed, I was doing a good job staying away from Blake's reach; hanging with Mike and John and Enya and Amber.’
    • ‘So now instead of interviews and hanging with the celebrities they're hanging with the jailbirds in prison.’
    • ‘Im a very out going person, not crazy wild, but I love to have fun and just hang with friends.’
    • ‘Yes, you'll need some time to just hang, but make your visit together memorable.’
    • ‘We should get that time off the just hang with our friends.’
    • ‘Can't a bro hang with his bro without people questioning it?’
    • ‘On the other hand, it's a beautiful day out and would you like to go hang at Starbucks?’
    • ‘People tend not to go outside and just hang with the neighbours.’
    • ‘A slew of Harley's were parked outside, a couple bikers hanging outside the open door to the saloon.’
    • ‘Make sure you only hang with friends who will do the same for you!’
    • ‘So you gonna come hang at my house tonight?’
    • ‘I was going to go talk to him and just hang with him and sort of soak in some of his wisdom.’
    • ‘The next time you and your friends decide to hit the mall, tell her you want to just hang with them.’
    • ‘In that case, keep your pal at arm's length - only hang with her at school or your house.’
  • 6Baseball
    with object Deliver (a pitch) which does not change direction and is easily hit by a batter.

    ‘this leads to hanging a breaking ball’
    • ‘This season Wells has been reluctant to throw over the inner half of the plate, and his tendency to hang pitches has been costly.’
    • ‘Suppan sports a 5.34 ERA and has been hanging his fastballs and off-speed stuff in the strike zone.’
    • ‘There is no question that his pitches must further improve, because my guess is the right-hander has the tendency to hang his curveball.’
    • ‘His looping, often tardy swing makes solid contact against little other than hanging off-speed pitches.’
    • ‘Well, he hung a slider to me on the first pitch, and I missed it.’

noun

  • 1A downward droop or bend.

    ‘the bullish hang of his head’
    • ‘You could see it in the hang of his head. You could tell that new things confused him.’
    • ‘To all appearances he is an alpha-male professional in a bespoke suit, but the hang of his shoulders speaks of a disappointed man.’
    • ‘It was in his walk, the sling of his shoulders, the hang of his face.’
    1. 1.1 The way in which something hangs.
      ‘the hang of the garments’
      • ‘Of late he has been paying furtive but detailed attention to his hair and his neckties and the hang of his clothes.’
      • ‘The side seams slant ever so slightly inwards creating a beautiful hang to the skirt.’
      • ‘The bigger muscles just ruin the hang of my jackets.’
      • ‘The hang of the dress is breathtaking.’
      • ‘The holster is mounted to the cartridge belt by a military-style wire hanger and has a swivel feature to ease the hang of the holster while mounted.’
      • ‘She adjusted the hang of the sword on her belt.’
    2. 1.2 The way in which pictures are displayed in an exhibition.
      ‘critics are apt to use up as much space reviewing the hang as the art’
      • ‘But that loss is more than made up for by attention to the hang, the single area which can make or break a show by this most quicksilver of artists.’
      • ‘In that time it has shown what seems like everyone, many of whom contributed works to the crammed-in salon-style hang.’
      • ‘At Tate Modern, the result was a momentously confusing opening hang, where nothing had a place in the greater scheme of things because there was no greater scheme of things.’
      • ‘Certain paintings did look good, but they were always let down by the hang.’
      • ‘But the hang is also otherwise inspired, using the chance to show such a diversity of pieces to ingenious advantage.’
      • ‘Incorporated into the existing hang, these provide revealing counterpoints to familiar faces in our national collection.’
      • ‘The artworks were a delight to view which could be due to the colourful assemblage and hang of the show.’
      • ‘A new hang brings Rossetti's Proserpine out on display’
      • ‘Wednesday Jack arrives and is delighted with the hang.’
      • ‘The hang allows us to move from their work directly to pieces by artists with whose ideas they might have empathised.’
      • ‘This being Glover's strength, I was a little disappointed that the hang of the exhibition didn't have the ambition to focus this strength.’
      • ‘Like the tapestries, and furniture, the picture hang was predominantly antique.’

exclamation

South African, NZ
dated
  • Used to express a range of strong emotions from enthusiasm to anger.

    ‘hang, but I loved those soldiers!’
    • ‘What the hang has that got to do with Michael Wintringham?’
    • ‘I know it's wrong, but hang, I feel compelled to get my $0.02 in!’
    • ‘Membership will cost something like $200, but who the hang will be able to afford to pay that?’

Usage

In modern English hang has two past tense and past participle forms: hanged and hung. Hung is the normal form in most general uses, e.g. they hung out the washing; she hung around for a few minutes; he had hung the picture over the fireplace, but hanged is the form normally used in reference to execution by hanging: the prisoner was hanged. The reason for this distinction is a complex historical one: hanged, the earlier form, was superseded by hung sometime after the 16th century; it is likely that the retention of hanged for the execution sense may have to do with the tendency of archaic forms to remain in the legal language of the courts

Phrases

  • get the hang of

    • informal Learn how to operate or do (something)

      ‘I never got the hang of roller-skating’
      • ‘Sushi-making isn't something you can get the hang of in a weekend.’
      • ‘It's fairly easy to get the hang of, so most people can feel comfortable right away.’
      • ‘This tool is a little tricky to get the hang of, but works well once you know what you are doing.’
      • ‘But it was funny to see myself back then, when at least I tried to wear make-up even though I never got the hang of eyeliner.’
      • ‘This felt a little awkward at first, but I eventually got the hang of it.’
      • ‘I'm getting the hang of my new digital camera and starting to understand the concepts of aperture, shutter speed and exposure.’
      • ‘He had learned to walk about a month ago and was still getting the hang of it.’
      • ‘He has learned to double-click, and is getting the hang of drag-and-drop.’
      • ‘I've never really got the hang of Performance Art.’
      • ‘I don't know if I've quite got the hang of eating properly.’
      get the knack of, master, learn, acquire the technique of, acquire the skill of, learn the art of, become proficient in, become expert in, manage, catch on to, pick up
      View synonyms
  • hang fire

    • Delay or be delayed in taking action or progressing.

      ‘a near agreement was hanging fire because of the concerns of some provinces’
      • ‘‘It's a strange situation, we haven't seen what we are looking for yet and with Andy unsure of his decision we may hang fire,’ said Barrow.’
      • ‘We'll keep on looking but may have to hang fire until next week.’
      • ‘Two years ago the District Auditor had warned the council that they must get rid of surplus places, but they had hung fire, because of good schools like Newland, and the upheaval caused to children and staff.’
      • ‘Given the obvious dangers of reading too much into such sales, it would only seem prudent for the Bank of England to hang fire on any rates changes until some sense has been restored to the overall retail picture.’
      • ‘If clubs can see that a new manager is not going to be able to go to the transfer market straight away they may hang fire on getting rid of the old boss.’
      • ‘I think everyone is hanging fire to see what happens.’
      • ‘Orkney Tourist Board are hanging fire before committing £72,000 to a new tourism project, until they're sure their money will be well spent.’
      • ‘For want of a public debate, key projects are still hanging fire.’
      • ‘She said: ‘People have been hanging fire from the outset of the disease to see what happens and because of the outbreak here it's not picking up.’’
      • ‘The international airport project has been hanging fire for the last 10 years, caught in a maze of controversies, suspicions, hurdles and delays.’
      delay, hang back, hold back, hold on, stall, stop, pause, cease, halt, discontinue, procrastinate, vacillate, adopt fabian tactics
      View synonyms
  • hang one's hat

    • informal Be resident.

      • ‘I'm blessed occasionally to hang my hat at some fancy abodes, and I'll concede to being spoiled during 2003 at the Windsor Court in New Orleans, the Four Seasons on Maui and Charleston Place in South Carolina.’
      • ‘Armed Forces Retirement Homes provide residents with much more than just a place to hang their hat.’
      • ‘Need a place to hang your hat in Manhattan, but lack the necessary means to make it happen?’
      • ‘My friend and former business partner, Barry, came to my rescue when he suggested that since we had opened an office in Bulgaria a year earlier, it might be a good idea for me to hang my hat in Sofia for a while.’
      • ‘He currently hangs his hat at the Hoover Institution at Stanford, where he conducts seminars on the War on Drugs for law enforcement officials.’
      • ‘He has been unforthcoming, even to members of his own band, about where he currently hangs his hat.’
      • ‘Nobody seemed to know exactly where Jason Farrell was hanging his hat these days.’
      • ‘Where do you hang your hat if you're looking for a change of scenery?’
      • ‘If that doesn't suit, there are plenty of other places to hang your hat just hours away.’
      • ‘Granted, I'm biased: I hung my hat there for some time, gratefully learning how to be a culture journalist, and later even contributed commentary.’
      reside, have one's home, have one's residence, be settled
      View synonyms
  • hang heavily (or heavy)

    • (of time) pass slowly.

      ‘time that hung heavily on hands that were growing increasingly useless’
      • ‘But Mother Agnes said she has never, in those sixty years, found time hanging heavily on her hands.’
      • ‘Time hangs heavy on the spooky Buffalo restaurant.’
      • ‘Sprinkle on toasted and chopped hazelnuts or walnuts if time hangs heavy.’
      • ‘Not only has the Secretary of State bought a new residence in Edinburgh, she has devised outrageously costly ways of passing the time that hangs heavily on her hands.’
      • ‘When Sir Robert Walpole retired into private life, time hung heavy on his hands, and Horace exerted himself to amuse his father.’
      drag on, go on and on, plod on, pass slowly, move slowly, creep along, limp along, crawl, hang heavy, go at a snail's pace, wear on, go on too long
      View synonyms
  • hang in the air

    • Remain unresolved.

      ‘the success of the Green movement has left that rather uncomfortable question hanging in the air’
      • ‘However, there are questions that remain hanging in the air.’
      • ‘The question still hung in the air, unanswered, how do you stop them getting away with it?’
      • ‘Her question hangs in the air: ‘Who could want to do this?’’
      • ‘Throughout this film, the question hangs in the air.’
      • ‘The fact that it's wildlife absolves us of the moral question that hangs in the air when we see footage of humans in mortal danger - why didn't the camera crew do something to help?’
      • ‘But the question always hangs in the air, ‘Why couldn't we make it work?’’
      • ‘Tonight the searches and the forensic tests continue and the big question hangs in the air: what was the target of the bomb plot?’
      • ‘His question hangs in the air, pointed and defiant.’
      • ‘He wisely does not make the link too explicit, but the possibility hangs in the air.’
      • ‘If she knows about your reputation, the possibility hangs in the air.’
      continue to exist, endure, last, abide, go on, carry on, persist, hang in the air, stay around, stay round, stand, be extant, hold out, prevail, survive, live on
      View synonyms
  • hang a left (or right)

    • informal Make a left (or right) turn.

      ‘down some more stairs, through another door, then hang a left’
      • ‘Go uptown about 20 blocks, hang a right, and walk five avenues over.’
      • ‘Speeding past a turning car, I hung a right into the alley, which was a shortcut to my penthouse.’
      • ‘Head out towards Malton along the A64 from York and, when you come to the crossroads, hang a left.’
      • ‘When I went there last, it was a matter of driving through a lot of sugar beet fields on a minor B-road and then hanging a right to this completely random pub.’
      • ‘They exited the infirmary and hung a right towards the main deck.’
      • ‘As my foot dithered between brake and accelerator, a lorry hung a left across my path and a person in a wheelchair zipped down the other side.’
      • ‘I hung a left somewhere and ended up on Cemetery Road.’
      • ‘We hung a left along the High St, and it was just around the corner.’
      • ‘Then, because she was a tourist, we hung a left and headed down the narrow alley to the tourist zone, so she could find a postcard to send to my sister.’
      • ‘Thinking it would be best to stop off at a gas station and collect a handful of food to eat and gas at the same time, I hung a right at the exit.’
      leave, branch off
      View synonyms
  • (a) hang of (a)

    • informal Used to emphasize something very bad or great.

      ‘we had to walk a hang of a long way’
      • ‘That makes a hang of a difference to what we do.’
      • ‘I’ve actually been doing a hang of a lot of things.’
      • ‘The Government should learn how to manage its workload a hang of a lot better than it has managed it over the last 4 years.’
      • ‘I sent this fellow along to him and he reported back that David was a hang of a nice chap.’
      • ‘I don't think you can fix the whole thing, but we can do a hang of a lot better than we're doing now.’
  • hang someone out to dry

    • informal Leave someone in a difficult or vulnerable situation.

      ‘the White House wasn't about to hang Thomas out to dry’
      • ‘The Boston Globe and many national papers have already hung him out to dry.’
      • ‘I think it is grossly unfair the way he has been hung out to dry on this issue.’
      • ‘‘They have abandoned me and hung me out to dry,’ she said.’
      • ‘I was not in a talkative mood after I had been hung out to dry.’
      • ‘If we make a mistake, they could be hung out to dry.’
      • ‘The Ministry of Defence had hung him out to dry.’
      • ‘Can he file civil lawsuits against these three women who have been so accusatory and hung him out to dry?’
      • ‘If we want to attract what we believe to be good people to do a job for us then they must feel comfortable in the knowledge that we will not hang them out to dry for something they may have done 14 or more years ago.’
      • ‘People were afraid that the political leadership would hang them out to dry if they made a mistake.’
      • ‘The White House hung her out to dry by undercutting or overriding her policies or public pronouncements.’
  • hang ten

    • Ride a surfboard with all ten toes curled over the board's front edge.

      • ‘I've pulled off hanging ten (for a second) on my little boards a couple times.’
      • ‘Walking the board is the first step to hanging ten.’
      • ‘This exciting surfing ride gives the feeling of hanging ten on a Maui wave.’
      • ‘They live for only one thing: hanging ten on a blue wave, much to the frustration of their girlfriends.’
      • ‘The young filmmakers are on the island to tape two surfers as they hang ten with some hungry sharks.’
  • hang tough

    • informal Be or remain inflexible or firmly resolved.

      ‘company chiefs continued to hang tough, despite increasing competition’
      • ‘He buys ad space in newspapers to press his case, but the committee is hanging tough.’
      • ‘But otherwise, you know, she hung tough and he wasn't able to really break her down.’
      • ‘She needs Dad to hang tough and to say, I'm looking for you, Jessie.’
      • ‘We hung tough to the very end, but it just wasn't enough.’
      • ‘Which is perhaps why she has the discipline to hang tough, befriend the enemy and leave revenge to the future.’
      • ‘Many riders stopped due to the conditions, but my teammates all hung tough.’
      • ‘Simply put, we do have to hang tough and be very steady.’
      • ‘As things get worse, we all know his instinct will be to brazen it out and hang tough.’
      • ‘And when they were challenged in early April, they hung tough.’
      • ‘I'm lucky to have a wonderful wife who hates that we are apart right now but is hanging tough.’
  • let it all hang out

    • informal Be very relaxed or uninhibited.

      • ‘A cast of any Shakespeare in the Park has, thanks to that marvellous ambiance, the luxury of letting it all hang out.’
      • ‘People should go to a coffee house to let it all hang out, not to sit huddled in tiny groups, each keeping to itself, each pretending the others aren't there.’
      • ‘Perhaps they have parties on the weekend, where they let it all hang out.’
      • ‘It is the end of yet another work week, so, it is time to let it all hang out, relax and have a couple of drinks.’
      • ‘It was rag week - the week when college students traditionally drink more than usual (if that's possible), neglect their studies and let it all hang out.’
      • ‘Reflecting now on that degrading article, I have to accept that Carnival is no longer about freeing up and letting it all hang out.’
      • ‘The place was jam packed, everyone seemingly letting it all hang out after the work week with their favourite brew and having a smoke.’
      • ‘In an interview in late 2002, the Massachusetts senator talked about the importance of ‘authenticity - to be who you are, to let it all hang out.’’
      • ‘But wouldn't it be great if just once in a while candidates let it all hang out and had a little fun?’
      • ‘While every one else was letting it all hang out, they sported suits, ties and short haircuts.’
      relax, loosen up, ease off, ease up, let up, slow down, de-stress, unbend, rest, repose
      View synonyms
  • not care (or give) a hang

    • informal Not care at all.

      ‘people just don't give a hang about plants’
      • ‘As an atheist I don't give a hang if the Catholic church destroys itself tomorrow.’
      • ‘When a man is dying, he doesn't give a hang about social betterment.’
      • ‘I don't care a hang for reputation.’
      • ‘Believe me, you have no cause to be jealous; she does not care a hang about me.’
      • ‘She didn't give a hang if I was clean or dirty.’
  • you may (or might) as well be hanged for a sheep as for a lamb

    • proverb If the penalty for two offences is the same, you might as well commit the more serious one, especially if it brings more benefit.

      • ‘Any blurring of this labelling might encourage offenders to reason that they might as well be hanged for a sheep as for a lamb, inducing them to commit significantly more harm because it might appear to involve no greater condemnation.’
      • ‘They often said to one another that no person could find them out, no one being present at the murders but themselves two and that they might as well be hanged for a sheep as a lamb.’
      • ‘It got to the point where I started to think, ‘Well, I might as well be hanged for a sheep as for a lamb.’’

Phrasal Verbs

  • hang around (or round or about)

    • 1Loiter; wait around.

      ‘undercover officers spent most of their time hanging around bars’
      loiter in, linger in, wait around in, spend time in, loaf in, loaf about in, loaf around in, lounge in, lounge about in, lounge around in
      View synonyms
      1. 1.1informal Wait.
        in imperative ‘hang about, you see what it says here?’
        wait, hold on, wait a minute
        wait, wait a minute, hold on, stop
        View synonyms
    • 2Associate with (someone)

      ‘he never hangs around with that gang’
      ‘there's this guy named Johnnie who I hang round with’
      associate, mix, go around, keep company, spend time, mingle, socialize, fraternize, consort, rub shoulders
      View synonyms
  • hang back

    • 1Remain behind.

      ‘Stephen hung back for fear of being seen’
      • ‘Cole and I hung back a bit, walking slowly behind them, our fingers loosely tangled through one another's.’
      • ‘Katie hung back, shaking and in deadly fear of being alone.’
      • ‘She hung back from the window in fear because she did not know what was going on, but saw police when she did look.’
      • ‘‘Um… hi,’ I muttered, hanging back behind Amanda in hopes that I wouldn't have to acknowledge Shawn's presence.’
      • ‘Thats why you will see a car chase on the news and several cop cars will be following behind the getaway car for a while, just hanging back.’
      • ‘Coach started speed drills and Liz hung back skating behind the guys.’
      • ‘When the bus finally stopped they hung back as all the kids filed off the bus.’
      • ‘To take advantage of the developing draft, the cars behind the leader often will hang back for as long as possible, hoping to pick up the freight train of partners who will help push them by the car in front.’
      • ‘Bella hung back behind the curtains, trying her best to calm herself.’
      • ‘Crushing my second thoughts, I made my way down the stairs to the entrance hall, where I stopped, hanging back behind the corner of the wall.’
      stay back, hold back, stay in the background, shrink back, shy away, be reluctant to come forward, hesitate, demur, recoil, turn away
      View synonyms
      1. 1.1Show reluctance to act or move.
        ‘I do not believe that our European neighbours will hang back from this’
        • ‘While the police hung back, a brave fellow citizen rushed forward to pull the men into his car and drive them to the hospital, saving their lives.’
        • ‘Because they're hanging back, rather than throwing themselves into life, they feel the years pass through their hands.’
        • ‘That is his style, giving powers to others and hanging back.’
        • ‘The film deals with topics like alcoholism and abuse that typically beg for over-the-top melodrama and sweeping moral declarations, but the film hangs back, shyly refusing grand gestures for the sake of intimacy and implication.’
        • ‘People often hang back from being a live donor because they are scared, but my mum and I are living proof that it does work.’
        • ‘I think I've not hung back in pointing out the deficiencies in funding that we've had and still have, over the years.’
        • ‘We went along to the session and I hung back and sort of sulked in a corner.’
        • ‘With 10 new countries due to join the EU next year and a constitutional treaty being drafted, this is not a time for Britain to be hanging back in Europe.’
        • ‘We also have quite a few contributors who like to hang back and give us something only when the spirit moves them.’
        • ‘He was convinced the companies were hanging back and that if one takes the plunge the other would follow.’
  • hang in

    • Remain persistent and determined in difficult circumstances.

      ‘in the second half, we just had to hang in there’
      • ‘For long stretches of the first half they had hung in and lived off the flimsiest of scraps.’
      • ‘But credit to Lancashire, they hung in well and could even have nicked the two points.’
      • ‘All credit to Australia, they hung in there and just would not lie down and were worthy defending champions.’
      • ‘When the tour started, he wasn't even in the party, but he hung in there and got a bit of luck.’
      • ‘I only need to look at the faces of my children to know why I hung in there so long.’
      • ‘It was close to being unplayable but I hung in well until my disappointing finish.’
      • ‘At least she's hung in there fighting for the principles Labor used to call foundational.’
      • ‘Swinford hung in doggedly and when they struck for a second goal, the gap was back to six points again.’
      • ‘But he was pleased with the way York hung in and restored some pride at the end of the first half only to let it slip away.’
      • ‘The first six laps were almost a copy of Saturday's race, but this time he hung in there.’
  • hang on

    • 1Hold tightly.

      ‘he hung on to the back of her coat’
      • ‘Every time we sped under a bridge, people walking by overhead stopped and leant over the side to wave, but most of the time, as we once again picked up speed, we were hanging on too tight to wave back.’
      • ‘Clasping me around the neck he hung on tightly, and it was all I could do to breathe.’
      • ‘Even as parents hung on to the railings of the balcony above, the children turned on their lung and brain power in the hall below.’
      • ‘He hung on to the side of the boat, his hands tightly grasping the rope.’
      • ‘The sailors' limbs flailed around, desperate to find something to hang on to.’
      • ‘Bracing herself as best as she could, Raquel hung on tightly to her chair with her good arm.’
      • ‘Looking down, he saw Tyra, hanging on as tightly as she could.’
      • ‘I would have felt safer if I had a bar to hang on to, rather than hanging suspended in a harness.’
      • ‘Jennifer grabbed David around the waist and hung on tightly trying to prevent the tiger getting him out of the vehicle.’
      • ‘I hung on to the back of his kilt as he set off in his stout brogues and little protection against the weather other than a sou'wester and a mackintosh.’
      hold on to, hold fast to, grip, clutch, grasp, hold tightly, cling to, cling on to
      View synonyms
      1. 1.1informal Remain firm or persevere, especially in difficult circumstances.
        ‘United hung on for victory’
        • ‘Her house was demolished to make way for a new tram station, even though she did not want to leave it and hung on until she was the last resident in her street to move out.’
        • ‘We hung on and hung on and three minutes into injury time we were somehow only two points down.’
        • ‘The doctors said I must hang on because they cannot write me off.’
        • ‘The Greens hung on for victory, which they deserved for their second half domination.’
        • ‘He was heartened by the way his side hung on for victory at Everton last weekend, but still concerned at their failure to finish the game off.’
        • ‘But she's persistent so she hangs on, and so we're caught in this constitutional crisis.’
        • ‘And so it was that the pre-match favourites hung on for the narrowest of victories.’
        • ‘They managed to hang on for the remaining five minutes to record a famous victory.’
        • ‘Despite insurmountable difficulties and cruelties he did not leave his homeland and hung on.’
        • ‘The whole area is due for demolition and the remaining residents are hanging on for a compulsory purchase settlement.’
        persevere, hold out, hold on, go on, carry on, keep on, keep going, keep at it, not give up
        View synonyms
      2. 1.2Keep; retain.
        ‘he is determined to hang on to his job’
        • ‘It's amazing what you hang on to when it should really have been thrown out years ago.’
        • ‘They too have a heritage that's worth hanging on to and worth preserving.’
        • ‘Local government hung on to all its underspend for the new financial year.’
        • ‘Some ideas and notions you have been hanging on to may have to be dropped as reality and life show you other truths.’
        • ‘German museums are not alone in hanging on to what they have got.’
        • ‘I would gather information, images, ideas from the raw creative source and try to hang on to as much of it as can.’
        • ‘We may not want to lose touch with our youth, but we have to be very careful what we hang on to.’
        • ‘Phoebe is honest and upright and true and I hope she hangs on to that because she's got this defiantly moral streak in her.’
        • ‘It's stuff that seems important enough to hang on to, but not actually important enough to deal with.’
        • ‘I was hanging on to too much of the interesting tax planning cases in the business rather than letting others contribute.’
        retain, hold on to, keep for oneself, retain possession of, keep possession of, retain in one's possession, keep hold of, not part with, hold fast to, hold back
        View synonyms
    • 2Wait for a short time.

      ‘hang on a minute—do you think I might have left anything out?’
      • ‘I told the lad on the till to hang on a minute because our stuff was getting mixed up and she gave me such a glare.’
      • ‘‘Yeah - wait, hang on,’ she let go of my hand and grabbed my shoulder as she untied her shoe.’
      • ‘But hang on, there is no doubt that he must have either stolen or received them.’
      • ‘All we are saying is, hang on a minute, let's see if we can do something better.’
      • ‘No bad sentiment, but hang on, that must lead to more heavy goods traffic in the area not less?’
      • ‘But I ask members to hang on and wait - there is more; help is on the way.’
      • ‘But hang on a minute: seventy years ago, fifty pence a day was quite a lot in New Zealand.’
      • ‘But hang on a minute - what's the council tax all about then?’
      • ‘Oh, hang on a minute, aren't they cool again at the moment?’
      • ‘He was having a terrible time for the first 25 minutes or so and then he must have thought, hang on, I'm good enough to play wherever and he was fantastic after that.’
      wait, wait a minute, hold on, stop
      View synonyms
      1. 2.1(on the telephone) remain connected until one is able to talk to a particular person.
        • ‘But I think they must have caller ID because I hung on the line for about 45 minutes and no-one took my call.’
        • ‘Richard Ford is livid after hanging on the telephone for hours trying to sort out his family's child tax credit.’
        • ‘The Evening Press reported yesterday how members of the public are being forced to hang on the telephone in order to have their reports of non-emergency crimes answered.’
        • ‘Did you know that the number one cause of rage in the UK is being left hanging on the telephone?’
        • ‘He hung on the line, waiting for Frank to pick up the phone.’
        • ‘I too tried phoning them and was hanging on for 20 minutes and then hung up.’
        • ‘They're always engaged or I'm kept hanging on waiting for someone.’
        • ‘Those who return the call can expect to be kept hanging on while listening to a rambling message.’
        • ‘The armed raider was left hanging on the telephone as his hostages left the building through the front door and bathroom window.’
        • ‘So I'm hanging on the phone, waiting to see what this woman wants.’
    • 3Be contingent or dependent on.

      ‘everything hangs on the forthcoming by-elections’
      • ‘But if the UN is to continue forward with this renewed momentum much hangs on the outcome of the US presidential election and its present campaign.’
      • ‘The entire case apparently hangs on the circumstance that they are paid less well than employees in the private sector.’
      • ‘Henman's victory hung on one appalling line call.’
      • ‘Much hangs on the outcome of France's referendum on the European Union constitution on May 29.’
      • ‘The Strand Road side were hungry and were determined not to lose another semi-final and they fought for victory as if their very lives hung on the outcome.’
      • ‘Whichever way you looked at it, this whole thing definitely hung on Mally being able to get his head round my thought patterns and cutting me some slack.’
      depend on, be dependent on, turn on, hinge on, rest on, be based on, be conditional on, be contingent upon, be determined by, be decided by, be conditioned by, revolve around
      View synonyms
    • 4Listen closely to.

      ‘she hung on his every word’
      • ‘Jimmie explained the process and Sara listened raptly, hanging on every word.’
      • ‘A thousand times he had pleaded with her, and like a fool she had listened to him, hanging on his every word.’
      • ‘Maxine swept in, looking fabulous and kept us hanging on every word for the rest of the evening.’
      • ‘The excitement and live energy he creates on stage, captures the imagination of all who see him and his fans hang on his every note when he sings.’
      • ‘We hung on their every word until their companies went bust, they were fired or they left to ‘pursue other interests’.’
      • ‘No problem; this is music of infinite charm and variety, and the audience hung on every note.’
      • ‘Aside from the occasional applause everyone is pensive, hanging on to her words.’
      • ‘She follows Cassio around and hangs on his every word.’
      • ‘It was an excellent chance for him to show off his technical guitar playing prowess, and I hung on every note.’
      • ‘They'll be hanging on every word, waiting for opinions on the third and fourth quarters of the year.’
      listen closely to, attend closely to, pay close attention to, be very attentive to, concentrate hard on, pay heed to, lend an ear to, give ear to, be rapt by
      View synonyms
  • hang something on

    • Attach the blame for something to (someone)

      ‘it is unfair to hang the loss on Williams’
      • ‘But this conspiracy mongering didn't stick - there were no easy targets to hang the blame on this time.’
      • ‘He shielded himself with his players' youth and inexperience - he hung the loss squarely on them.’
      • ‘I am not hanging the blame for the disease on anyone at all.’
      • ‘I think his Party's treatment of him was despicable and if the leader of the party intends to hang the defeat on him that will be more despicable.’
      • ‘What he refused to do was hang the blame on any one individual.’
  • hang out

    • 1(of washing) hang from a clothes line to dry.

      ‘the inhabitants fled with such haste that their washing is still hanging out’
      • ‘Acid smuts had damaged clothing hung out to dry in his garden and the paintwork of the plaintiff's car parked in the highway.’
      • ‘If people had their clothes hung out they would get steeped in the pervading smell of whatever was for dinner.’
      • ‘It was believed to have been started by an overheated stovepipe igniting some clothes that were hanging out to dry in an upper room in the attic.’
      • ‘They all provide shade, permit natural ventilation, and conceal air conditioning and washing hung out to dry.’
      • ‘There are little balconies all along the houses with clothes hanging out to dry - it's mad to see that people are actually living there.’
      • ‘Clothes were hanging out to dry on the homely wires strung across the higher parts of the alley.’
      • ‘Figures dozed on the dirty floor as clothes hung out to dry.’
      • ‘Clean clothes were hanging out on washing lines in the gardens of houses.’
      • ‘I caught glimpses of the atriums those passageways opened onto, often with gardens, maybe statues, washing hanging out to dry.’
      • ‘My apartment is a mess, I'm a mess, all my clothes are wet and hung out to dry and it's been drizzling steadily all day.’
    • 2Protrude and hang loosely downwards.

      ‘chaps in jeans with their shirts hanging out’
      • ‘He stood there, shirt hanging out, one hand holding a fag, the other sweeping the air as he described the fall of each wicket.’
      • ‘Clothes were everywhere, the dressers were half opened with clothes hanging out.’
      • ‘We thought it was funny as well, the way he stood there with his tongue hanging out like an idiot, crackling away.’
      • ‘One day, it got stuck to my back and was hanging out the top of my pants.’
      • ‘His bright yellow t-shirt stuck to his frame with sweat and was hanging out over his fading jeans.’
      • ‘He wore a light grey shirt, loosely hanging out and a pair of dark denim jeans.’
      stick out, jut, jut out, poke out, project, stand out, come through, peek, poke, stick up, hang out, loom, loom out, extend, obtrude
      View synonyms
      1. 2.1Lean out of.
        ‘he was found after the collision hanging out of the defendant's car’
        • ‘Soldiers with automatic rifles hung out of the windows waving us angrily aside.’
        • ‘People were hanging out of buildings and standing on top of cars just to try to get a look.’
        • ‘Ian saw the road passing rapidly underneath him as he hung out of the car.’
        • ‘Scores of office workers hung out of windows to catch a glimpse of the Prime Minister as he arrived.’
        • ‘Cathy hangs out of one of the car's blackened windows and waves graciously.’
        • ‘The man, in his early 20s, was hanging out of a bedroom window of his third-floor flat trying to eradicate the nest in the roof eves.’
        • ‘I walked down Quay Street one day and there were youths hanging out of the windows and running in and out of the building.’
        • ‘Later she saw the man hanging out of a bedroom window talking to police.’
        • ‘A tall man was hanging out of the open door of the bus checking that the bus was free to move.’
        • ‘A burglar was caught in the act when his victim came home and found him hanging out of his bedroom window.’
    • 3Spend time relaxing or enjoying oneself.

      ‘musicians hang out with their own kind’
      • ‘She makes me laugh and I really enjoy hanging out with her.’
      • ‘The rest of the day flew by, as the four of us just hung out, talked, relaxed.’
      • ‘With the Easter holidays just underway, school children are looking forward to two weeks of late morning lie-ins and afternoons spent hanging out with their friends.’
      • ‘Just a short time ago your teen's biggest concern might have been hanging out with her friends and wondering what clothes to wear.’
      • ‘You live in a mansion, dress in the most expensive clothes, and hang out with the most popular people.’
      • ‘I went and hung out in an internet café until I could stand without wobbling.’
      • ‘Then again, what you really should be doing is hanging out outside and enjoying the weather.’
      • ‘We're going spend two days just relaxing and hanging out in quiet and privacy.’
      • ‘Most of the journalists spend the day hanging out by the pool, in the airport central courtyard.’
      • ‘We did class projects together in Spanish and even hung out after school every now and then.’
      associate, mix, go around, keep company, spend time, mingle, socialize, fraternize, consort, rub shoulders
      View synonyms
    • 4Resist or survive in difficult circumstances; hold out.

      • ‘If you love him and he treats you right when your together, hang it out a bit longer.’
      • ‘Okay, I’ll hang it out for a while but if this goes on much longer I’m out of here’
      1. 4.1Desire strongly; crave.
        • ‘No, it's the post-operative recovery that I'm hanging out for.’
        • ‘But that's small change compared to former CEO Paul Batchelor, who's rumoured to be hanging out for $20 million.’
        • ‘Every morning I wake up vowing I won't drink again, but then by midday I'm hanging out for just a sip of something!’
        • ‘How many desperate people are holding their breath, postponing their lives, hanging out for the day when super-science gives them back their spine, their limbs, their eyes, their brain cells, their life?’
        • ‘There's an invitation I've been hanging out for.’
  • hang something out

    • Hang something on a line or pole or from a window.

      ‘the embassies hung out their flags’
      • ‘There exists in my family, residing with my mum's sister as it happens, an old 35 mm film of my father in the garden of our old house hanging nappies out to dry on a clothes line in our garden.’
      • ‘He built a stepping stone path across a stream to a big rock where he could hang his clothes out to dry.’
      • ‘When the practice session for the day was over, I would take all four sets, heavy with sweat, to a nearby well, wash them, and hang them out on a bamboo pole.’
      • ‘If the old lady wanted anything fetching up, she would hang a yellow duster out in her garden, and one of the girls would have to go running up the hill to see what was needed.’
      • ‘Children play football on the streets, and people hang their laundry out of the windows to drip on passers-by.’
      • ‘When I got back and hung my swimming costume out to dry I discovered that it's a bit worse for wear!’
      • ‘North Yorkshire Council may tell residents they are only allowed to hang their washing out to dry for eight hours a week.’
      • ‘There was little resistance and after two guards had been killed and a few people wounded, the palace hung white sheets out of the windows as a surrender signal.’
      • ‘Another speaker called for people to hang white flags out of their windows as a symbol of opposition to war.’
      • ‘There were several other young mums around, and we chatted over the fences as we hung the nappies out.’
      peg out, peg up, stick up, pin up, drape, fix, fasten
      View synonyms
  • hang together

    • 1Make sense; be consistent.

      ‘it helps the speech to hang together’
      • ‘We who hear and read stories are good at telling whether a plot makes sense, hangs together, or whether the story remains unfinished.’
      • ‘But this may have been an attack of literary nerves because he feared the poem would not be taken seriously unless it appeared to hang together as a coherent whole.’
      • ‘The plot barely hung together, it was so full of holes.’
      • ‘They want information that hangs together, that makes sense, that has some degree of order to it.’
      • ‘In fact, considering the number of plotlines on the go, it's amazing that the film hangs together enough to give you an overall sense of theme.’
      • ‘His interpretation and speculation hang together, make sense, and are consistent with the sources.’
      • ‘In fact, much of the script seems to consist of pieces of unfinished scenes that do not clearly hang together.’
      • ‘I would say the plot hung together, the dialogue was not too cliched, and there was just about enough characterisation.’
      • ‘But the characters are staying consistent and the whole thing hangs together with much more coherence that I thought it possessed.’
      • ‘That book might have been more fluffy than this one but at least it hung together and made some sense.’
    • 2(of people) remain associated; help or support each other.

      ‘the autonomous regions have an incentive to hang together’
      • ‘‘Everybody here hangs together, no matter what your age is or what you do,’ says Bégin, adding that the band, like its town, is above generation and gender gaps.’
      • ‘Travel and hospitality was a way of life among the Elizabethan Catholic nobility who hung together for mutual support.’
      • ‘I think there is recognition that unless we work together and unless we hang together we make much less of an impact internationally.’
      • ‘They hung together and cheered the quality rides of each team member, leaving to other clubs the slightly overdone exuberances of attracting media and public attention.’
      • ‘But somehow, we all hung together; we worked 90 days straight that summer.’
      • ‘There are signs of the premiers now working together and hanging together, notwithstanding the traditional ‘divide and rule’ tactics of the Feds.’
      • ‘It is too much to expect individuals to thwart the intentions of a closely knit, overwhelmingly dominating force which knows it must either hang together or be hanged together.’
      • ‘I think that the international community may not be hanging together to deal with these things.’
      • ‘Yet, as inexperienced as they undoubtedly were, the players hung together, eschewed the insularity that has plagued the region and produced the most rewarding and hopeful performance in the last match.’
      • ‘Traditionally speaking, it's the Republicans that are said to be the party that hangs together more decisively, more politely than the Democrats.’
  • hang up

    • 1Hang from a hook.

      ‘your dressing gown's hanging up behind the door’
      • ‘I found that there were already 3 bras hanging up on a peg.’
      • ‘The jacket is hanging up on the coat rack - if I can discreetly snap a picture of it, I'll post it up.’
      • ‘A few hours later the dress clothes were hung up and they were lying happily in each others arms.’
      • ‘It's only 2pm now and my standard-issue jacket is already hanging up for the day on the hook in the bedsit.’
      • ‘Your jacket is hanging up on my bedroom door by the way!’
      • ‘Her favorite dress was hanging up perfectly pressed ready for her to put on.’
    • 2End a telephone conversation by cutting the connection.

      ‘‘Thanks,’ she says, and hangs up’
      • ‘Leon hung up and remained still a moment, inside the booth.’
      • ‘She thought to leave him a message explaining her position but when the opportunity presented itself she just hung up.’
      • ‘I don't want to have to hang up in the middle of a great conversation with my best friend.’
      • ‘Derek claims staff were told to terminate telephone calls from him and hang up when he tried to contact them.’
      • ‘She quickly excused herself from her conversation, hanging up a moment later.’
      • ‘So I told him to hang up and let us restart the conversation and give me an opportunity to give the required responses.’
      • ‘He hangs up, and moments later answers a call from his wife.’
      • ‘Presently, she hung up and shifted her gaze back to the blonde girl on the other side of the desk, trying to frame words that would break the impasse.’
      • ‘The technician asks the person to carry out a simple test using the dialling buttons on their telephone and then hang up.’
      • ‘The phone rang and she answered it, holding a short conversation in Spanish before hanging up.’
      1. 2.1End a telephone conversation with (someone) by abruptly and unexpectedly cutting the connection.
        ‘somebody called up and the reporter hung up on him’
        • ‘If she hadn't already been mad at me over our phone conversation, hanging up on her had certainly done the trick.’
        • ‘I hang up on my wildly ecstatic literary agent rather abruptly and retrieve my morning paper from the coffee table before me.’
        • ‘This crazy old lady started calling constantly because I dared have an opinion and then I kept hanging up on her, but after about seven or eight calls, she gave up for the night.’
        • ‘It's pretty hard getting a good read on the public's opinion when people keep hanging up on you.’
        • ‘I am not here to take abuse from you, and if you continue to do so, I will not hesitate in hanging up on you.’
        • ‘After hanging up on her I walked from my hotel room to the main street in the small town in New Hampshire where we were filming and recast Kirsten's role with the first girl that I saw on the street.’
        • ‘I ask her to at least tell me why she's mad at me and she says, ‘I'm sorry, I can't,’ and hangs up on me.’
        • ‘He told me at one point that he was mad at me for hanging up on him; I told him that I had repeatedly said I was too busy to talk and hung up again.’
        • ‘That's how the conversation ends; I just hang up on him as if our conversation held no importance to me.’
        • ‘I studiously avoid poll takers waiting to ambush me at train stations and supermarkets, and I hang up on telephone surveys.’
  • hang something up

    • 1Hang something on a hook.

      ‘Jamie hung up our jackets’
      • ‘I just followed the others through the front door and hung my backpack up on a hook.’
      • ‘Tessa and John hung their jackets up in the hall closet and then came and sat down with us.’
      • ‘Sunday was spent in similar vein, except that it involved me reorganising the shed, and then installing a set of hooks in the shed to hang the bikes up.’
      • ‘I slipped out of my dress and hung it up on a hook attached to the back of the door.’
      • ‘She unzipped her pale blue jacket and hung it up on one of the coat hooks by the door.’
      • ‘‘Nice house,’ Rick commented, unzipping his jacket and slowly hanging it up on the coat rack propped up next to the door.’
      • ‘He dragged out a punching bag and hung it up on a hook in the corner.’
      • ‘Maura always hung her clothes up at the end of the day.’
      • ‘I hung my jacket up and walked happily upstairs to my bedroom.’
      • ‘The girl peered around the dormitory and hung her clothes up in a closet that she shared with the other girl.’
      1. 1.1informal Cease or retire from the activity associated with the garment or object specified.
        ‘the midfielder has finally decided to hang up his boots’
        • ‘John Hampshire, incidentally, hangs up his umpire's coat at the end of the season and he officiated at a Yorkshire match for the last time last weekend.’
        • ‘Serena has been studying fashion in Florida for some time now, and hopes to become a full-time designer when she hangs up her racket.’
        • ‘Nick is looking forward to a great day and will probably hang his boots up after the match.’
        • ‘Traffic warden Gerald Shaw hangs up his fluorescent coat for the last time today after 16-and-a-half years of duty in the town.’
        • ‘She has many more years of cutting, colouring and styling before she hangs up her scissors.’
        • ‘He hangs up his badge and his handcuffs tomorrow after 36 years on the force.’
        • ‘A lollipop lady is finally hanging up her stick after 32 years of helping children to cross the road.’
        • ‘But he is not ruling out a possible U-turn by the player - however unlikely it may seem - until the Icelandic international finally hangs up his boots.’
        • ‘But arguably, for the club's sake, he should have hung his boots up a few seasons ago.’
        • ‘This week really marks the end of an era for us here at the station because one of our great friends and colleagues, John Duggan, hangs up the microphone after almost seventeen years.’

Origin

Old English hangian (intransitive verb), of West Germanic origin, related to Dutch and German hangen, reinforced by the Old Norse transitive verb hanga.

Pronunciation

hang

/haŋ/