Definition of zigzag in English:

zigzag

noun

  • 1A line or course having abrupt alternate right and left turns.

    ‘she traced a zigzag on the metal with her finger’
    • ‘Rectangular cells, gently arching lines and compressed zigzags proliferate across the supports.’
    • ‘she shows weals on her thigh, thin green lines in a short zigzag.’
    • ‘Lines of anger cut across her forehead - a zigzag of violent emotions.’
    • ‘Females will fly to their nests in zigzags or semi-circles to avoid leading a predator directly to the nest.’
    • ‘The company allowed for a zigzag rather than a linear route to the top.’
    • ‘The object flew a straight line course with no stops, starts or zigzags.’
    • ‘The police are having to take positive action in a bid to stop parents dropping off or picking up their children on the zigzag lines outside three more schools.’
    • ‘Two models that have been proposed for this higher-order structure include a regular spiral and an irregular zigzag.’
    1. 1.1 A turn on a zigzag course.
      ‘the road descends in a series of sharp zigzags’
      curve, turn, corner, kink, angle, arc, crescent, twist, crook, deviation, deflection, loop
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adjective

  • Having the form of a zigzag; veering alternately to right and left.

    ‘when chased by a predator, some animals take a zigzag course’
    • ‘Have a look inside for the jazzy zigzag Norman chancel arch.’
    • ‘These small white cells form a continuous zigzag pattern that recalls a cardiogram; indeed, Kulik sees the artist as the heartbeat of society.’
    • ‘Gung-ho climbers can tackle the zigzag trail up the steep incline.’
    • ‘He initiated this possibility by manipulating versions of the liar's paradox with zigzag graphs of truth and falsehood states.’
    • ‘For very bulky sweater knits, serge-finish the raw edges, then seam with a narrow to medium zigzag stitch.’
    meandering, zigzagging, snaking, snaky, winding, wiggly, squiggly, crooked, tacking, twisting, twisty, full of twists and turns, curving, curvy, wavy, deviating, undulating, sinuous, serpentine, tortuous, irregular
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adverb

  • So as to move right and left alternately.

    ‘she drives zigzag across the city’

verb

[NO OBJECT]
  • Have or move along in a zigzag course.

    ‘the path zigzagged between dry rises in the land’
    • ‘The path zigzagged through the now disused Caw Quarry, first past a stone hut and then past the opening of an old level.’
    • ‘It took us around four hours, zigzagging down steep scree, traversing rock walls with sheer drops to one side.’
    • ‘They zigzagged along until Estrella found herself in the familiar surroundings of the underground meeting hall.’
    • ‘We zigzagged through Boerum Hill, turning at every corner.’
    • ‘The distance wasn't even that long, but the path zigzagged so much it doubled the walking distance.’
    • ‘He moved unpredictably like lightning, zigzagging towards Kitsumi in a crookedly random path.’
    • ‘For two weeks he sat on a bus that zigzagged along the eastern seaboard picking up other criminals who were being reassigned from one jail to another.’
    • ‘I once rented a scooter and zigzagged along most of San Miguel's streets to see the neighborhoods.’
    • ‘Butterflies feasted on purple asters, and dragonflies zigzagged over the buttonbushes, which bore a crop of round, dry fruits.’
    • ‘At length the road became nothing more than a path, zigzagging down a crumbling mountain slope.’
    • ‘Sense starts zigzagging like the lightning logo bolting across Captain Marvel's costume.’
    • ‘They zigzagged on every wall like miniscule bumper cars.’
    • ‘He's been zigzagging across the continent for nearly 20 years, non-stop.’
    • ‘In April, he was loaded onto a snow-filled train that zigzagged through Germany and Czechoslovakia for three weeks.’
    • ‘Even with the new snow, I could see a faint trail zigzagging up the ridge.’
    • ‘They were on a small path that zigzagged towards an unpleasant looking cave.’
    • ‘From there we zigzagged up a sometimes steep but relatively easy path, and crossed a few patches of snow to reach the lake.’
    • ‘Half an hour later, Willie's nose zigzagged up a rise onto level patch of sun where, a hundred years ago, a house had stood.’
    • ‘We zigzagged over the whole country like crazy.’
    • ‘The sighting happened at 2: 30 AM, and was announced by a local radio station claiming the object was zigzagging in the night sky.’
    meander, snake, twist, twist and turn, tack, wind, weave, wander, wiggle, squiggle, undulate
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Origin

Early 18th century: from French, from German Zickzack, symbolic of alternation of direction, first applied to fortifications.

Pronunciation

zigzag

/ˈzɪɡzaɡ/