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

  • n. An ornamental drapery or curtain draped in a curve between two points.
  • n. An ornamental festoon of flowers or fruit.
  • n. A carving or plaster molding of such an ornament.
  • n. Promotional items, especially when given for free, considered as a group.
  • n. Slang Stolen property; loot.
  • n. Australian The pack or bundle containing the personal belongings of a swagman.
  • n. Slang Herbal tea in a plastic sandwich bag sold as marijuana to an unsuspecting customer.
  • intransitive v. Chiefly British To lurch or sway.
  • intransitive v. Australian To travel about with a pack or swag.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To sway; to cause to sway;
  • v. To droop.
  • v. To decorate (something) with loops of draped fabric.
  • n. A loop of draped fabric.
  • n. A low point or depression in land; especially, a place where water collects.
  • n. Style; fashionable appearance or manner.
  • n. The booty of a burglar or thief; a boodle.
  • n. Handouts, freebies, or giveaways, such as those handed out at conventions.
  • n. The possessions of a bushman or itinerant worker, tied up in a blanket and carried over the shoulder, sometimes attached to a stick.
  • n. A small single-person tent, usually foldable in to an integral backpack.
  • n. A large quantity (of something).
  • n. Alternative capitalization of SWAG; a wild guess or ballpark estimate.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A swaying, irregular motion.
  • n. A burglar's or thief's booty; boodle.
  • n.
  • n. A tramping bushman's luggage, rolled up either in canvas or in a blanket so as to form a long bundle, and carried on the back or over the shoulder; -- called also a bluey, or a drum.
  • n. Any bundle of luggage similarly rolled up; hence, luggage in general.
  • intransitive v. To hang or move, as something loose and heavy; to sway; to swing.
  • intransitive v. To sink down by its weight; to sag.
  • intransitive v. To tramp carrying a swag.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To sink down by its weight; lean; sag.
  • To move as something heavy and pendent; sway.
  • To tramp about in search of work, carrying one's swag. See swagman, 2.
  • n. An unequal, hobbling motion.
  • n. Same as swale, 2.
  • n. A bundle; the package or roll containing the possessions of a swagman.
  • n. A festoon. See the quotation.
  • n. In decorative art, an irregular or informal cluster: as, a swag of flowers in the engraved decoration of a piece of plate.
  • n. In coalmining, a subsidence of the roof, in consequence of the working away of the coal: same as weighting.
  • n. A large quantity: a lot; hence, plundered property; booty; boodle.

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

  • n. valuable goods
  • n. a bundle containing the personal belongings of a swagman
  • v. walk as if unable to control one's movements
  • v. droop, sink, or settle from or as if from pressure or loss of tautness
  • v. sway heavily or unsteadily
  • n. goods or money obtained illegally


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

Probably of Scandinavian origin.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Probably from Old Norse sveggja ("to swing, sway")

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Shortening of swagger (noun).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From British thieves′ slang.



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  • This is a backronym.

    January 24, 2018

  • There is a slang version of this in use as well, as an acronym for "Secretly We Are Gay". I was advised by someone who teaches Human Sexuality that this meaning is still in use.

    February 26, 2013

  • There are many Urban Dictionary entries for "swag," most having to do with promotional merchandise distributed at concerts, trade shows, conferences, and awards shows. Probably related to older definition of "loot"; attempts at backronyms (Stuff We Are Given, Shit We All Get) are almost certainly spurious. Secondary Urban Dictionary definition--"the way one carries oneself"--may derive from "swagger."

    June 8, 2009

  • She saw signs, and chilled as she saw them, of certain swags under her chin, if not yet reality, then certainly warning.

    —Dorothy Parker, 'The Bolt behind the Blue'

    Note also unusual intransitive use of 'chill'.

    November 12, 2008

  • See boodle.

    January 17, 2008

  • Stuff(sh!t) We All Get.

    September 28, 2007