Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A small mass of soft material, often folded or rolled, used for padding, stuffing, or packing.
  • n. A compressed ball, roll, or lump, as of tobacco or chewing gum.
  • n. A plug, as of cloth or paper, used to retain a powder charge in a muzzleloading gun or cannon.
  • n. A disk, as of felt or paper, used to keep the powder and shot in place in a shotgun cartridge.
  • n. Informal A large amount: a wad of troubles.
  • n. Informal A sizable roll of paper money.
  • n. Informal A considerable amount of money.
  • transitive v. To compress into a wad.
  • transitive v. To pad, pack, line, or plug with wadding.
  • transitive v. To hold (shot or powder) in place with a wad.
  • transitive v. To insert a wad into (a firearm).
  • intransitive v. To form into a wad.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An amorphous, compact mass.
  • n. A substantial pile (normally of money).
  • n. A soft plug or seal, particularly as used between the powder and pellets in a shotgun cartridge.
  • n. an ejaculate of semen.
  • n. Any black manganese oxide or hydroxide mineral rich rock in the oxidized zone of various ore deposits
  • v. To crumple or crush into a compact, amorphous shape or ball.
  • v. to wager

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Woad.
  • n. A little mass, tuft, or bundle, as of hay or tow.
  • n. Specifically: A little mass of some soft or flexible material, such as hay, straw, tow, paper, or old rope yarn, used for retaining a charge of powder in a gun, or for keeping the powder and shot close; also, to diminish or avoid the effects of windage. Also, by extension, a dusk of felt, pasteboard, etc., serving a similar purpose.
  • n. A soft mass, especially of some loose, fibrous substance, used for various purposes, as for stopping an aperture, padding a garment, etc.
  • n. An earthy oxide of manganese, or mixture of different oxides and water, with some oxide of iron, and often silica, alumina, lime, or baryta; black ocher. There are several varieties.
  • n. Plumbago, or black lead.
  • transitive v. To form into a mass, or wad, or into wadding.
  • transitive v. To insert or crowd a wad into; ; also, to stuff or line with some soft substance, or wadding, like cotton.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To form into a wad or into wadding; press together into a mass, as fibrous material.
  • To line with wadding, as a garment, to give more roundness or fullness to the figure, keep out the cold, render soft, or protect in any way.
  • To pad; stuff; fill out with or as with wadding.
  • To put a wad into, as the barrel of a gun; also, to hold in place by a wad, as a bullet.
  • A Scotch form of wed.
  • A Scotch form of would.
  • n. A small bunch or wisp of rags, hay, hair, wool, or other fibrous material, used for stuffing, for lessening the shock of hard bodies against each other, or for packing.
  • n. Specifically, something, as a piece of cloth, paper, or leather, used to hold the powder or bullet, or both, in place in a gun or cartridge.
  • n. In ceramics, a small piece of finer clay used to cover the body of an inferior material in some varieties of earthenware; especially, the piece doubled over the edge of a vessel.
  • n. An obsolete or dialectal form of woad.
  • n. An impure earthy ore of manganese, which consists of manganese dioxid associated with the oxid of iron, cobalt, or copper. When mixed with linseed-oil for a paint it is apt to take fire. Also called bog-manganese, earthy manganese.
  • n. Same as plumbago.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a small mass of soft material
  • n. (often followed by `of') a large number or amount or extent
  • n. a wad of something chewable as tobacco
  • v. compress into a wad
  • v. crowd or pack to capacity

Etymologies

Origin unknown.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Probably short for Middle English wadmal ("woolen cloth"), from Old Norse váðmál ("woolen stuff"), from váð (“cloth”) +‎ mál (“measure”). See wadmal. Cognate with Swedish vadd ("wadding, cotton wool"), German Watte ("wad, padding, cotton wool"), Dutch watten ("cotton wool"), Old English wǣd ("garment, clothing"). More at weed, meal. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • It wad hurt me sair tae think a bit title wad mak 'a difference to ma friends.

    Between You and Me

  • And what really gets liberal panties in a wad is when you point out that fascism is a form of socialism too, and that Democrats share far more similarities with classic fascism than anything else, and more so than any other political group.

    Democrats = Socialists. Obama Is A Socialist. « Tai-Chi Policy

  • The FliteControl wad is configured 180° compared to standard wads so the cup flares at the rear instead of the front.

    I shoot a stoeger model 2000 which is a 3 inch gun......i was curious what are the best shells to use for Goose and Duck hunting

  • Even if I did support him, I would not get my panties in wad if someone pronounced his name incorrectly, which was what my comment was about.

    Your Right Hand Thief

  • In my experience, hunting with deer slugs for the last 48 years, the original Brenneke slug with screwed-on felt wad, is the best deer getter out there.

    Is the Ithaca Deerslayer still a good slug gun?

  • Although ported tubes offer very little in the way of recoil reduction, despite manufacturers 'claims, the ports do help strip the wad from the shot column, preventing it from ramming into your pattern.

    Shotgun Myths Explained

  • He's led his grey gelding into the stable the noo, and niver a word wad he say to me or he gaed oot.

    Stories of the Border Marches

  • For I'm weary wi 'the hunting, and fain wad lie down.

    Lord Ronald

  • Muir wi 'Mr. Frank here; and if I canna mak Rob hear reason, and his wife too, I dinna ken wha can --- I hae been a kind freend to them afore now, to say naething o' ower-looking him last night, when naming his name wad hae cost him his life

    Rob Roy

  • "But," he added, "there was nae occasion to gie me sic a dirdum: a word wad hae pitten me mair i 'the wrang."

    Malcolm

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Comments

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  • "2. Specifically, something, as a piece of cloth, paper, or leather, used to hold the powder or bullet, or both, in place in a gun or cartridge. For ordinary double- or single-barreled shot-guns, wads are disks of felt, leather, or pasteboard cut by machinery or by a hand-tool, often indented to allow passage of air in ramming home, and sometimes specially treated with a composition which helps to keep the barrels from fouling." --Cent. Dict.

    May 5, 2011