See also: Siege, siége, siégé, and siège


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Alternative formsEdit

  • syege (15th–16th centuries)


From Middle English sege, from Old French sege, siege, seige (modern French siège), from Vulgar Latin *sēdicum, from Latin sēdicŭlum, sēdēcula (small seat), from Latin sēdēs (seat).


  • (file)
  • enPR: sēj IPA(key): /siːdʒ/
  • Rhymes: -iːdʒ


siege (plural sieges)

  1. (heading) Military action.
    1. (military) A prolonged military assault or a blockade of a city or fortress with the intent of conquering by force or attrition.
    2. (US) A period of struggle or difficulty, especially from illness.
    3. (figuratively) A prolonged assault or attack.
      • 2012 June 19, Phil McNulty, “England 1-0 Ukraine”, in BBC Sport:
        But once again Hodgson's men found a way to get the result they required and there is a real air of respectability about their campaign even though they had to survive a first-half siege from a Ukraine side desperate for the win they needed to progress.
  2. (heading) A seat.
    1. (obsolete) A seat, especially as used by someone of importance or authority.
      • 1485, Sir Thomas Malory, “ij”, in Le Morte Darthur, book V:
        Now Merlyn said kyng Arthur / goo thow and aspye me in al this land l knyghtes whiche ben of most prowesse & worship / within short tyme merlyn had founde suche knyȝtes [] Thenne the Bisshop of Caunterbury was fette and he blessid the syeges with grete Royalte and deuoycyon / and there sette the viij and xx knyghtes in her syeges
        (please add an English translation of this quote)
      • 1590, Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Qveene. [], London: [] [John Wolfe] for VVilliam Ponsonbie, OCLC 960102938, book II, canto vii:
        To th'vpper part, where was aduaunced hye / A stately siege of soueraigne maiestye; / And thereon sat a woman gorgeous gay [].
    2. (obsolete) An ecclesiastical see.
    3. (obsolete) The place where one has his seat; a home, residence, domain, empire.
    4. The seat of a heron while looking out for prey.
    5. A flock of heron.
    6. (obsolete) A toilet seat.
    7. (obsolete) The anus; the rectum.
      • 1650, Thomas Browne, chapter III, in Pseudodoxia Epidemica: [], 2nd edition, London: [] A[braham] Miller, for Edw[ard] Dod and Nath[aniel] Ekins, [], OCLC 152706203, 1st book, page 17:
        Another ground were certain holes or cavities observable about the siege; which being perceived in males, made some conceive there might be also a feminine nature in them.
    8. (obsolete) Excrements, stool, fecal matter.
    9. (obsolete) Rank; grade; station; estimation.
    10. (obsolete) The floor of a glass-furnace.
    11. (Can we verify(+) this sense?)(obsolete) A workman's bench1874, Edward H. Knight, American Mechanical Dictionary.
  3. (obsolete) A place with a toilet seat: an outhouse; a lavatory.


Derived termsEdit



siege (third-person singular simple present sieges, present participle sieging, simple past and past participle sieged)

  1. (transitive, uncommon) To assault or blockade a city or fortress with the intent of conquering by force or attrition; to besiege.
    Synonym: besiege








  1. inflection of siegen:
    1. first-person singular present
    2. singular imperative
    3. first/third-person singular subjunctive I

Middle FrenchEdit


siege m (plural sieges)

  1. siege (prolonged military assault or a blockade of a city or fortress with the intent of conquering by force or attrition)
  2. seat (place where one sits)