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A typical keg (half-barrel) with single opening in the center of the top end.


From Middle English kag, from Old Norse kaggi (keg). Cognate with Icelandic kaggi (keg; cask), Norwegian kagg (keg), Swedish kagge (keg), Low German kag (vessel; craft), Dutch kaag (vessel; craft).


  • IPA(key): /kɛɡ/
  • Rhymes: -ɛɡ
  • (dated, South Midland US) IPA(key): /kæɡ/[1]
  • (dated, New England, Virginia, South Carolina) IPA(key): /keɪɡ/[1]


keg (plural kegs)

  1. A round, traditionally wooden container of lesser capacity than a barrel, often used to store beer.


Derived termsEdit



keg (third-person singular simple present kegs, present participle kegging, simple past and past participle kegged)

  1. (transitive) To store in a keg.
    • 2011, Carla Kelly, Coming Home for Christmas (page 116)
      He gestured toward the empty chair and the other officers began passing him their kegged beef and ship's biscuit.
    • 2015, Randy Mosher, Mastering Homebrew (page 228)
      Many of us get impatient with the tedium of bottling after a year or two and start thinking about kegging our beers instead.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Hans Kurath and Raven Ioor McDavid (1961). The pronunciation of English in the Atlantic States: based upon the collections of the linguistic atlas of the Eastern United States. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, p. 133.