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

  • n. The centimeter-gram-second unit of energy or work equal to the work done by a force of one dyne acting over a distance of one centimeter.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The unit of work or energy, being the amount of work done by a dyne working through a distance of one centimeter. Equal to 10−7 joules.
  • n. A large desert region of sand dunes with little or no vegetation, especially in the Sahara.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The unit of work or energy in the C. G. S. system, being the amount of work done by a dyne working through a distance of one centimeter; the amount of energy expended in moving a body one centimeter against a force of one dyne (981 dynes exert the same force as a one gram mass in the earth's gravitational field). One foot pound is equal to 13,560,000 ergs. The absolute Joule is equivalent to 107 ergs, which are equivalent to 0.2389 gram-calories at 15° C. See also mechanical equivalent of heat under equivalent.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In physics, the unit of work in the centimeter-gram-second system—that is, the amount of work done by the unit of force, one dyne, acting through the unit of distance, one centimeter.

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

  • n. a cgs unit of work or energy; the work done by a force of one dyne acting over a distance of one centimeter


From Greek ergon, work; see werg- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Ancient Greek ἔργον (ergos, "work"). (Wiktionary)
From French erg, from Maghrebi Arabic عرگ (‘erg), corresponding to Standard Arabic عرق (‘irq). (Wiktionary)


  • "Work" is the Greek word erg, with which Paul urges us to make an event of our faith.


  • The name erg is derived from the Greek word ergon meaning "work".


  • And you’re off like a shot, using that last bit of energy, the last erg from the gels and bars and the glycogen your muscles have saved.

    What It’s Like

  • An erg is the unit of energy and mechanical work The erg is a small unit, equal to a force of one dyne exerted for a distance of one centimetre.

    Sorry… - Lolcats 'n' Funny Pictures of Cats - I Can Has Cheezburger?

  • So the form of the infinite and universal energy, which we may call erg-dynamic, is the cause of the waste of the body through which it works; and this is at once made good by the increased trophic metabolism which occurs, to replace the waste -- this increased trophic metabolism showing itself in increased O_2 intake and coincidently or correspondingly with increased CO_2 output.

    The Problems of Psychical Research Experiments and Theories in the Realm of the Supernormal

  • An erg is the unit of energy and mechanical work in the centimeter-gram-second (CGS) system of units, symbol "erg".


  • After riding with a band of a hundred men, twenty of them mounted, they spent the night at a place where there was what the Celts call an "erg" (_airigh_) but the Norse call "setr," the modern sheiling.

    Sutherland and Caithness in Saga-Time or, The Jarls and The Freskyns

  • The Technocrat has told us all kinds of silly things about abandoning our customary standard of values and substituting the scientific standard which is usually measured by an "erg" or an "umph".

    The Riddle of the Depression

  • Squampton: "Like many of us, I have both, but Midomi tends to find foreign songs a lot better ..." erg: "it's great to see sound recognition technologies starting to get broader use ...."

    The iPhone Blog

  • "We go straight to the consumer," said Mr. Lindeb erg.

    Denim Master Unveils New Line


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • Great. I thought Amp, Ohm, and Erg were the three elves that brought us electricity.

    October 10, 2007

  • Always makes me think of the board game (from the 80's I think) that was based on Frank Herbert's Dune books. There were lots of ergs in there.

    September 19, 2007

  • An erg is a sandy desert vs a rocky one (hamada); see

    September 19, 2007

  • Origin: 1870–75; < Gk érgon work

    December 10, 2006