hug / həg/ • v. (hugged, hug·ging) [tr.] squeeze (someone) tightly in one's arms, typically to express affection: he hugged her close to him people kissed and hugged each other. ∎ hold (something) closely or tightly around or against part of one's body: he hugged his knees to his chest. ∎ fit tightly around: a pair of jeans that hugged the contours of his body. ∎ keep close to: I headed north, hugging the coastline all the way. ∎ (hug oneself) congratulate or be pleased with oneself: she hugged herself with secret joy. ∎ cherish or cling to (something such as a belief): a boy hugging a secret.• n. an act of holding someone tightly in one's arms, typically to express affection: there were hugs and tears as they were reunited. ∎ a squeezing grip in wrestling.DERIVATIVES: hug·ga·ble adj.