Two people are arguing about the superiority of their dog. The argument goes as following:

NATALYA STEPANOVNA: Why talk rot? It's awful! It's time your Guess was shot, and you compare him with Squeezer!

LOMOV: Excuse me; I cannot continue this discussion: my heart is palpitating.

NATALYA STEPANOVNA: I've noticed that those hunters argue most who know least.

LOMOV: Madam, please be silent. ... My heart is going to pieces. ... [Shouts] Shut up!

NATALYA STEPANOVNA: I shan't shut up until you acknowledge that Squeezer is a hundred times better than your Guess!

LOMOV: A hundred times worse! Be hanged to your Squeezer! His head ... eyes ... shoulder ...

NATALYA STEPANOVNA: There's no need to hang your silly Guess; he's half-dead already!

LOMOV: [Weeps] Shut up! My heart's bursting!

NATALYA STEPANOVNA: I shan't shut up.

(Guess and Squeezer are the dogs' names.)

  • 2
    This is a weird looking and sounding sentence. Can you give some more context, or, more importantly, source? I've never seen the past form of Hang written as "hanged".
    – zerohedge
    Apr 17 '15 at 15:58
  • If I recall correctly, hanged refers to hanging someone (something?) to death, and it's been mentioned on ELL somewhere. The problem is, I can't remember where! Apr 17 '15 at 16:09
  • That is true that hanged can mean to hang something to death, but that doesn't sound like what it's talking about here, though I'm not quite sure what it is talking about.
    – Nicole
    Apr 17 '15 at 16:21
  • "Be hanged to" is not idiomatic English. Idiomatic, if archaic, would be "Your Squeezer be hanged!" To hang s.o. is to execute a person by attaching a rope to their neck and then hoisting them up or dropping them from a platform. The past tense is "hanged", although many native speakers say "hung": They hung [sic] him from a tree. (nonstandard) Apr 18 '15 at 14:06
  • @zerohedge It is from The Proposal by Anton Chekhov. Apr 18 '15 at 18:45

I think the definition #3, b from American Heritage Dictionary applies to your context:

Used to express exasperation or disgust: I'll be hanged! Hang it all!


If you want to express that A and B are physically connected, such that moving A also moves B, to is the preposition to use (i.e. connected to, tied to, leashed to, etc.)

While it's unusual to see hanged being used in this manner, that's how I would interpret it. I believe the implication is that the subject of this sentence is so attached physically (by a leash, etc.) to his dog that his dog can figuratively drag him around, even at the detriment of the subject.

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