Definition of sandbag in English:



  • A bag filled with sand, typically used for defensive purposes or for protection from flooding.

    • ‘During the day, Team Cobra dug foxholes, strung wire, and filled sandbags, because site defense is never complete.’
    • ‘Heavyweights held 20-pound sandbags and lightweights held 15-pound bags.’
    • ‘One unit brought along stationary bikes that are sitting next to foxholes and sandbags.’
    • ‘Volunteers gathered around landmarks and scrambled to fill hundreds of sandbags in a desperate bid to save the city's treasures from the rising waters.’
    • ‘The platoon tracks could occasionally kick out four sandbags tied together as casualties that the first sergeant could take back to the battalion aid station.’
    • ‘‘All personnel, being base combatant personnel, are trained in how to fill sandbags, how to place them down on the ground into the pits allocated,’ he said.’
    • ‘The twenty yard stretch was cleared by nightfall, although the sides would be unstable until enough sandbags could be filled and lodged into place to retain the loose mud.’
    • ‘All vehicles must be reinforced with sandbags to help absorb the effects of IEDs and other attacks.’
    • ‘Finally, sand mixed with archeological fragments has been used to fill sandbags intended for protecting military positions.’
    • ‘Along the perimeter, sandbags are being filled and wire is laid.’
    • ‘Soldiers have been using sandbags and Kevlar blankets on the floors of their unprotected HMMWVs to help improve levels of protection.’
    • ‘Punters put aside their pints on Monday November 21 to fill and carry sandbags in a valiant effort to keep the outside knee-deep floodwater from entering the Bryansford Road pub.’
    • ‘They hired local men as translators or to fill sandbags at the camp.’
    • ‘At night sentries were doubled, and most men found themselves on carrying parties, going back along communication trenches to bring up barbed wire, sandbags, ammunition, or trench-mortar bombs.’
    • ‘Not all vehicles were up-armored before leaving FOB Pacesetter, but the vehicles without armor used sandbags for protection as the brigade moved north.’
    • ‘The weight of a combat-loaded infantry squad with over 50 sandbags will deteriorate a M998 quickly.’
    • ‘I stood on a street corner one day and I watched 10th Mountain Division troops in trucks with sandbags and plywood, which is pretty much state of the art now as far as defeating a mine strike.’
    • ‘They also trace their history back to the Australian Flying Corp in Palestine, WW1, dropping ammo in sandbags.’
    • ‘Adding a sense of combat reality to the classroom are sandbags, camouflage netting, and the sounds of exploding ordnance and close air support.’
    • ‘They returned to downtown Grand Forks to fill sandbags in hopes of thwarting rising flood waters.’


  • 1Barricade using sandbags.

    ‘boarded-up shopfronts and sandbagged doorways’
    • ‘For each section, terram was laid, sandbags placed to hold it in position, and then the lines of historic palisades and piles were sandbagged.’
    • ‘In the first days of INTERFET a number of sandbagged positions were built on the forward deck of the unarmed ship from which machine gunners watched grimly as the ship travelled close to ‘unknown’ territory when entering Dili Harbour.’
    • ‘Outside the heavily guarded and sandbagged main gate is a gaggle of small boys, hustling DVDs of The Passion of the Christ and the Baywatch satire, Son of the Beach, to GIs.’
    • ‘Marines take cover behind a sandbagged fighting position to lay down a hail of paintball rounds on the opposition.’
    • ‘Fearing floods, thousands of residents sandbagged their homes.’
    • ‘We came upon two sandbagged positions, both deserted.’
    • ‘The device was sandbagged, the area cleared and then the tranquillity shattered briefly as a sympathetic charge disposed of the shell.’
    • ‘Beside us, a Forward Air Controller uses a powerful periscope to pinpoint enemy targets over the sandbagged rim of the observation post.’
    • ‘The councillor said the problem along Highway 52 has been going on for the past four or five years, noting this year alone several houses in the areas have had to be sandbagged.’
    • ‘A tough decision must be made with respect to sandbagging the trucks.’
    • ‘A shallow trench took us to a forward observation post, a sandbagged nest with binoculars and links to the unmanned aerial vehicles circling overhead.’
    • ‘Volunteers have reinforced dikes along the Elbe River and sandbagged their homes and businesses trying to avoid a deluge.’
    • ‘Trenches are being dug, power stations sandbagged and people have started to carry gas masks around with them.’
    • ‘The containers in which the soldiers live and operate could be sandbagged on the exterior to protect the occupants from small arms fire and fragmentation.’
    • ‘Marines fought house-to-house against dozens of well-armed insurgents firing at them from balconies, rooftops and sandbagged bunkers in the border town of Obeidi and surrounding villages.’
    • ‘Sharpshooters were stationed on rooftops, troops levelled guns from sandbagged windows and armoured vehicles rumbled through the streets of Jamaica's capital, Kingston, under the protection of a hovering helicopter gunship.’
    • ‘Cultural heritage sites, from medieval castles to irreplaceable works of art, were under threat in the 800-year-old Czech capital Prague and the German city of Dresden, while tourist areas were sealed off and sandbagged.’
    • ‘These options have been to either send in shirtsleeve forces who must displace and fight from sandbagged 5-ton cargo trucks or send in forces equipped with 68-ton Abrams tanks and Bradley fighting vehicles.’
    • ‘In case anyone starts to think they are camping in the park instead of hunkering down in a war zone, the camp's perimeter is ringed by razor wire and sandbagged foxholes manned by armed guards.’
    • ‘At the Information Ministry, also on the river's west bank, civilians armed with rocket-propelled grenade rifles stood by and a half-dozen soldiers manned sandbagged positions.’
  • 2Hit or fell with or as if with a blow from a sandbag.

    • ‘Adverse customer reaction will quite possibly sandbag this one, but remember to ask yourself if you really need that new SIM right now.’
    • ‘Microsoft can, and you can bet, probably will use this procedure to sandbag future litigation: it adds several months to any future case as the respective lawyers set their meters running.’
    • ‘For Daniel's son, history will sandbag him out of a pleasantly drifting existence as he grapples with questions of race and confronts his own colonisation.’
    • ‘The dot-com collapse was dramatic enough, but even the skeptical few who saw that one coming were sandbagged by the sharpness of the overall market decline.’
    • ‘And, unlike in many thrillers, the movie doesn't sandbag us with one last, cheap twist at the end.’
    1. 2.1North American Coerce; bully.
      • ‘But they sandbagged her, so the last thing she was going to do was take insults from the man who almost ruined her career.’
      • ‘He had already announced that he was planning to leave the program to work on a book, but he knew he had been sandbagged, and he didn't like it.’
      • ‘I think that he was sandbagged a bit by the way they were reported originally.’
      • ‘I felt sandbagged by the organizers, so after five to ten minutes I left,’ recounted Kay.’
      • ‘He accused them of sandbagging him by not fully explaining what they intended to do.’
      • ‘Do you feel in any way, Governor, sandbagged by some other Democrats in the party?’
      • ‘This in itself is A-OK, but such countries run the risk of being sandbagged by protectionist tariffs initiated by neighbouring nations.’
  • 3[no object] Deliberately underperform in a race or competition to gain an unfair advantage.

    • ‘Either they sandbagged during qualifying and practice or they gave very high downforce to the cars to make them slower during those sessions.’