AskDefine | Define mug

Dictionary Definition



1 the quantity that can be held in a mug [syn: mugful]
2 a person who is gullible and easy to take advantage of [syn: chump, fool, gull, mark, patsy, fall guy, sucker, soft touch]
3 the human face (`kisser' and `smiler' and `mug' are informal terms for `face' and `phiz' is British) [syn: countenance, physiognomy, phiz, visage, kisser, smiler]
4 with handle and usually cylindrical v : rob at gunpoint or with the threat of violence; "I was mugged in the streets of New York last night" [also: mugging, mugged]

User Contributed Dictionary



  • /mʌɡ/
  • /mVg/
  • Rhymes: -ʌɡ


  1. A large cup for hot liquids, usually having a handle and used without a saucer.
  2. The face, often used deprecatingly.
    What an ugly mug.


* mush

Related terms


large cup
(slang) The face
(colloquial) A person who is easily fooled



  1. To assault for the purpose of robbery.
  2. To exaggerate a facial expression for communicative emphasis; to make a face, to pose for photographs in an exaggerated or affected manner.


to assault for the purpose of robbery
to pose for photographs in an exaggerated or affected manner

Derived terms







mug (plural: muggen, diminutive mugje)

Extensive Definition

A mug is a sturdily built type of cup often used for drinking hot beverages, such as coffee, tea, or hot chocolate. Mugs, by definition, have handles and often hold a larger amount of fluid than other types of cup. In more formal settings a mug is usually not used for serving hot beverages, with a teacup or coffee cup being preferred. Shaving mugs can be used to assist in wet shaving.
Many mugs are made of ceramic materials such as earthenware, bone china, porcelain or stoneware. Some are made from strengthened glass, such as Pyrex. Other materials, including plastic, steel and enameled metal are used where break resistance is at a premium, such as for campers. Techniques such as silk screen printing or decals can be used to apply decorations; these are fired onto the mug to ensure permanence.


Though at first glance a very simple object, the mug serves a number of functions which make it especially suited to holding hot liquids:
  • Provides a handle: (i) for grasping, and (ii) provides a cool area of the mug that is insulated from the hot liquid by distance.
  • Hot beverages may be too hot to drink, with temperatures often nearing the boiling point of water. The thick walls of a typical mug will absorb much of this heat when the liquid is first poured into the mug and so lower the beverage closer to potable temperatures.
  • The mug stores some heat from the beverage, and so prevents it from cooling too quickly. The design of a mug helps insulation: (i) thick walls separate the beverage from the cool external air, and (ii) an indented base separates the beverage from the surface upon which the mug is set. The shape of the base forms the characteristic O-shaped stain, so often seen upon desks and documents.

Specialist designs

A travel mug is a variation on the traditional mug that is better for transporting hot liquids. It may or may not be a vacuum flask, but is usually well insulated and completely enclosed, with an easily closed opening on the top.
A puzzle mug is a novelty that is counter-intuitive. It will usually have several holes in the rim, making it impossible to drink from in the normal way. Frequently the solution is to cover all the holes in the rim, and then drink via another hole in the hollow handle.
mug in Czech: Hrnek
mug in German: Tasse
mug in Spanish: Taza
mug in French: Mug
mug in Korean: 머그잔
mug in Hebrew: ספל
mug in Dutch: Beker (voorwerp)
mug in Japanese: マグカップ
mug in Polish: Kubek
mug in Portuguese: Caneca
mug in Russian: Кружка
mug in Simple English: Mug
mug in Finnish: Muki
mug in Swedish: Mugg (kärl)
mug in Chinese: 馬克杯

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

Photostat, Telephoto, Wirephoto, X-ray, Xerox, aerial photograph, ambush, assail, assault, attack, babe, barbarize, batter, bazoo, beaker, black-and-white photograph, blackjack, blitz, blockhead, boob, bowl, bruiser, brutalize, bullyboy, burn, bushwhack, butcher, butt, byword, byword of reproach, calotype, candid photograph, capture on film, carry on, chalice, chaps, cheesecake, chops, chronophotograph, chump, cinch, coffee cup, color photograph, color print, come at, come down on, commit robbery, countenance, crack down on, credulous person, cull, declaim, derision, descend on, descend upon, destroy, dial, diapositive, dimwit, dolt, dope, dumbbell, dupe, easy mark, easy pickings, eggcup, embouchure, face, facies, fair game, fall guy, fall on, fall upon, favor, features, figure of fun, film, fish, fool, gab, game, gang up on, gazingstock, glass, go at, go for, go on, goat, gob, gobe-mouches, goblet, goon, gorilla, greener, greenhorn, greeny, grimace, gudgeon, gull, gun, gunsel, ham, ham it up, hammer, harry, hatchet man, have at, heist, heliochrome, heliograph, hellion, highball glass, hijack, hit, hit like lightning, hold up, holy terror, hood, hoodlum, hooligan, horn, idiot, ignoramus, innocent, jaw, jaws, jest, jestingstock, jigger, joke, jowls, jump, kisser, knock over, land on, laughingstock, lay at, lay hands on, lay into, lay waste, leadpipe cinch, light into, lineaments, lips, loot, loving cup, make a face, make a mouth, mandibles, map, mark, maul, maw, maxilla, microfilm, mockery, monkey, montage, mop, mop and mow, moue, mouth, mouthing, mow, mucker, mug shot, mugger, muscle man, mush, muzzle, noggin, numskull, oral cavity, out-herod Herod, overact, overdramatize, pan, patsy, phiz, photo, photobiography, photochronograph, photograph, photomap, photomicrograph, photomontage, photomural, physiognomy, picture, pigeon, pillage, pinup, pitch into, plaything, plug-ugly, pony, portrait, pounce upon, pound, pout, premaxilla, prize sap, pull a face, punk, pushover, puss, radiograph, rage, ramp, rampage, rant, rape, rave, riot, rip off, roar, rob, rodman, roentgenograph, rough, roughneck, rowdy, ruffian, ruin, sack, sail into, sap, saphead, savage, schlemiel, schooner, schooper, set on, set upon, shell, shoot, shot, shot glass, sitting duck, slaughter, slide, snap, snapshoot, snapshot, sow chaos, spout, stein, stick up, still, still photograph, stock, stooge, storm, strike, strong-arm man, sucker, surprise, swoop down on, take a photograph, take the offensive, talbotype, tankard, target, tassie, teacup, tear, tear around, telephotograph, terror, terrorize, throw away, thug, torpedo, tough, toy, transparency, trap, trigger man, trusting soul, tumbler, ugly customer, underact, vandalize, victim, violate, visage, wade into, wineglass, wreck, yap
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