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

  • n. Any of various lively dances in triple time.
  • n. The music for such a dance. Also called gigue.
  • n. A joke or trick. Used chiefly in the phrase The jig is up.
  • n. A typically metal fishing lure with one or more hooks, usually deployed with a jiggling motion on or near the bottom.
  • n. An apparatus for cleaning or separating crushed ore by agitation in water.
  • n. A device for guiding a tool or for holding machine work in place.
  • intransitive v. To dance or play a jig.
  • intransitive v. To move or bob up and down jerkily and rapidly.
  • intransitive v. To operate a jig.
  • transitive v. To bob or jerk (something) up and down or to and fro.
  • transitive v. To machine (an object) with the aid of a jig.
  • transitive v. To separate or clean (ore) by shaking a jig.
  • idiom in jig time Informal Very quickly; rapidly.
  • n. Offensive Slang Used as a disparaging term for a Black person.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A light, brisk musical movement; a gigue.
  • n. A lively dance in 6/8 (double jig), 9/8 (slip jig) or 12/8 (single jig) time; a tune suitable for such a dance. By extension, a lively traditional tune in any of these time signatures. Unqualified, the term is usually taken to refer to a double (6/8) jig.
  • n. A dance performed by one or sometimes two individual dancers, as opposed to a dance performed by a set or team.
  • n. A type of lure consisting of a hook molded into a weight, usually with a bright or colorful body.
  • n. A device in manufacturing, woodworking, or other creative endeavors for controlling the location, path of movement, or both of either a workpiece or the tool that is operating upon it. Subsets of this general class include machining jigs, woodworking jigs, welders' jigs, jewelers' jigs, and many others.
  • v. To move briskly, especially as a dance.
  • v. To fish with a jig.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A light, brisk musical movement.
  • n. A light, humorous piece of writing, esp. in rhyme; a farce in verse; a ballad.
  • n. A piece of sport; a trick; a prank.
  • n. A trolling bait, consisting of a bright spoon and a hook attached.
  • n.
  • n. A small machine or handy tool.
  • n. An apparatus or a machine for jigging ore.
  • intransitive v. To dance a jig; to skip about.
  • intransitive v. To move with a skip or rhythm; to move with vibrations or jerks.
  • transitive v. To sing to the tune of a jig.
  • transitive v. To trick or cheat; to cajole; to delude.
  • transitive v. To sort or separate, as ore in a jigger or sieve. See Jigging, n.
  • transitive v. To cut or form, as a piece of metal, in a jigging machine.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To play or dance a jig.
  • To move skippingly or friskily; hop about; act or vibrate in a lively manner. Compre jigget.
  • To use a jig in fishing; fish with a jig: as, to jig for bluefish.
  • To sing in jig time; sing as a jig.
  • To jerk, jolt, or shake; cause to move by jogs or jolts.
  • To produce an up-and-down motion in.
  • In metallurgy, to separate the heavier metalliferous portion of (the mingled ore and rock or veinstone obtained in mining) from the lighter or earthy portions, by means of a jig or jigging-machine.
  • To catch (a fish) by jerking a hook into its body.
  • In felting, to harden and condense by repeated blows from rods.
  • In well-boring, to drill with a spring-pole.
  • To trick; cheat; impose; upon; bamboozle.
  • n. A rapid, irregular dance for one or more persons, performed in different ways in different countries; a modification of the country-dance.
  • n. Music for such a dance or in its rhythm, which is usually triple and rapid: often used in the eighteenth century as a component of a suite.
  • n. A lively song; a catch.
  • n. A kind of entertainment in rime, partly sung and partly recited.
  • n. A piece of sport; a prank; a trick.
  • n. A small, light mechanical contrivance: same as jigger, 2: used especially in composition: as, a drilling-jig, shaving-jig, etc.
  • n.

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

  • v. dance a quick dance with leaping and kicking motions
  • n. a fisherman's lure with one or more hooks that is jerked up and down in the water
  • n. any of various old rustic dances involving kicking and leaping
  • n. a device that holds a piece of machine work and guides the tools operating on it
  • n. music in three-four time for dancing a jig


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

Origin unknown.
Probably shortening of jigaboo.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

An assimilated form of earlier gig, from Middle English gigge, from Old French gige, gigue ("a fiddle, kind of dance"), from Frankish *gīge (“dance, fiddle”), from Proto-Germanic *gīganan (“to move, wish, desire”), from Proto-Indo-European *gheiǵh-, *gheigh- (“to yawn, gape, long for, desire”). Cognate with Middle Dutch ghighe ("fiddle"), German Geige ("fiddle, violin"), Danish gige ("fiddle"), Icelandic gigja ("fiddle"). More at gig, geg.


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