also zigzag, 1712, from French zigzag (1670s), perhaps from German Zickzack (though this is attested only from 1703), possibly a reduplication of Zacke "tooth, prong." Earliest use in German is in reference to military siege approaches. Originally in English used to describe the layout of certain garden paths. As an adjective from 1750; the verb is recorded from 1774. The brand of cigarette paper is from 1909. Related: Zig-zagged; zig-zagging.