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a woman wearing a ball gag

A gag is designed to prevent speech or the subject making noise. This may be by blocking the mouth partially or completely to preventing the tongue, lips, or jaw from moving. Gags may cause suffocation, so a gagged person should never be left alone.

A cloth gag over the mouth may also be used to keep dust and aerosols out of the lungs.[1]

In symbolism[edit]

  • In political cartoons a character may be shown gagged to indicate that an order prevents them from speaking about a matter.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Described, and called a "gag", in a recorded commentary in the Catalyst chemical industry museum in Runcorn (Cheshire, England), to keep alkali dust out of workers' lungs in the early years of the chemical industry in Britain.