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’
    • ‘The object flew a straight line course with no stops, starts or zigzags.’
    • ‘The company allowed for a zigzag rather than a linear route to the top.’
    • ‘Two models that have been proposed for this higher-order structure include a regular spiral and an irregular zigzag.’
    • ‘Lines of anger cut across her forehead - a zigzag of violent emotions.’
    • ‘Rectangular cells, gently arching lines and compressed zigzags proliferate across the supports.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘she shows weals on her thigh, thin green lines in a short zigzag.’
    • ‘Females will fly to their nests in zigzags or semi-circles to avoid leading a predator directly to the nest.’
    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’
    • ‘Gung-ho climbers can tackle the zigzag trail up the steep incline.’
    • ‘For very bulky sweater knits, serge-finish the raw edges, then seam with a narrow to medium zigzag stitch.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘He initiated this possibility by manipulating versions of the liar's paradox with zigzag graphs of truth and falsehood states.’
    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’
    • ‘We zigzagged over the whole country like crazy.’
    • ‘The distance wasn't even that long, but the path zigzagged so much it doubled the walking distance.’
    • ‘Even with the new snow, I could see a faint trail zigzagging up the ridge.’
    • ‘From there we zigzagged up a sometimes steep but relatively easy path, and crossed a few patches of snow to reach the lake.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘They zigzagged along until Estrella found herself in the familiar surroundings of the underground meeting hall.’
    • ‘The sighting happened at 2: 30 AM, and was announced by a local radio station claiming the object was zigzagging in the night sky.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘The path zigzagged through the now disused Caw Quarry, first past a stone hut and then past the opening of an old level.’
    • ‘At length the road became nothing more than a path, zigzagging down a crumbling mountain slope.’
    • ‘We zigzagged through Boerum Hill, turning at every corner.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘They were on a small path that zigzagged towards an unpleasant looking cave.’
    • ‘Sense starts zigzagging like the lightning logo bolting across Captain Marvel's costume.’
    • ‘Butterflies feasted on purple asters, and dragonflies zigzagged over the buttonbushes, which bore a crop of round, dry fruits.’
    • ‘It took us around four hours, zigzagging down steep scree, traversing rock walls with sheer drops to one side.’
    • ‘He moved unpredictably like lightning, zigzagging towards Kitsumi in a crookedly random path.’
    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/