Etymology
Advertisement
slug (n.1)

"shell-less land snail," 1704, originally "lazy person" (early 15c.); related to sluggard.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
slug (n.2)

"lead bit," 1620s, perhaps a special use of slug (n.1), perhaps on some supposed resemblance. Meaning "token or counterfeit coin" first recorded 1881; meaning "strong drink" first recorded 1756, perhaps from slang fire a slug "take a drink," though it also may be related to Irish slog "swallow." Journalism sense is from 1925, originally a short guideline for copy editors at the head of a story.

Related entries & more 
slug (n.3)

"a hard blow," 1830, dialectal, of uncertain origin; perhaps related to slaughter or perhaps a secondary form of slay.

Related entries & more 
slug (v.)

"deliver a hard blow with the fist," 1862, from slug (n.3). Related: Slugged; slugging. Slugging-match is from 1878.

Related entries & more 
slugger (n.)

1877, originally in baseball, agent noun from slug (v.). Meaning "one who hits with the fists" is from 1883.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
slugfest (n.)

1910, originally in reference to baseball, from slug (n.3) + -fest.

Related entries & more 
slog (v.)

1824, "hit hard," probably a variant of slug (v.3) "to strike." Sense of "walk doggedly" first recorded 1872. Related: Slogged; slogger; slogging.

Related entries & more 
slug-a-bed (n.)

also slugabed, 1590s, with bed (n.) + obsolete verb slug "be lazy, intert" (early 15c.), which is perhaps from Scandinavian (see sluggard).

Related entries & more 
beche-de-mer (n.)

sea-slug eaten as a delicacy in the Western Pacific, 1814, from French bêche-de-mer, literally "spade of the sea," a folk-etymology alteration of Portuguese bicho do mar "sea-slug," literally "worm of the sea."

Related entries & more 
loach (n.)

small edible European fish, mid-14c., from Old French loche "loach" (13c.), also, in dialect, "slug," a word of unknown origin (see discussion in Gamillscheg).

Related entries & more