from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Exhausted or distraught and often gaunt in appearance.
  • adjective Wild and intractable. Used of a hawk in falconry.
  • noun An adult hawk captured for training.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Wild; intractable: said of a hawk or falcon.
  • Hence Untamed; lawless; wanton; profligate.
  • noun A hawk; specifically, in falconry, a wild hawk caught when in its adult plumage.
  • noun A hag; an ugly old woman; also, a wanton.
  • Wild-looking, as from prolonged suffering, terror, or want; careworn; gaunt; wildly staring.
  • Desperately wild; reckless: with reference to an act.
  • Synonyms Grim, Grisly, etc. (see ghastly); lean, worn, wasted (especially in countenance).
  • noun A stack-yard.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective obsolete Wild or intractable; disposed to break away from duty; untamed.
  • adjective Having the expression of one wasted by want or suffering; hollow-eyed; having the features distorted or wasted by pain; wild and wasted, or anxious in appearance.
  • noun (Falconry) A young or untrained hawk or falcon.
  • noun A fierce, intractable creature.
  • noun obsolete A hag.
  • noun Prov. Eng. A stackyard.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective Looking exhausted and unwell, in poor condition
  • adjective Wild or untamed
  • noun dialect, Ireland A stackyard, an enclosure on a farm for stacking grain, hay, etc.
  • noun falconry A hunting bird captured as an adult.

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

  • adjective showing the wearing effects of overwork or care or suffering
  • adjective very thin especially from disease or hunger or cold
  • noun British writer noted for romantic adventure novels (1856-1925)


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

[French hagard, wild, from Old French, wild hawk, raptor, perhaps of Germanic origin.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old French faulcon hagard ("wild falcon") ( > French hagard ("dazed")), from Middle High German hag ("coppice") ( > archaic German Hag ("hedge, grove")). Akin to Frankish hagia ( > French haie ("hedge"))


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  • Haggard through the hot white noon

    from "Pursuit," by Sylvia Plath

    April 8, 2008

  • "I was spreading a bit of manure for Patrick down in Garry Dyne when one of Tommy's young ones came up to me. "Maggie Frances is dying," she said. And what do you know, Kitty, the young one, was just going in the door when I reached the end of the haggard."

    The Dirty Dust by Máirtín Ó Cadhain, translated by Alan Titley, p 7

    June 5, 2016