Recorded since 1579, from quag + mire. The sense “perilous, mixed up and troubled situation” has been recorded since 1775.
Alternatively, the word may apparently be a variation of the earlier quakemire, from quake + mire.
quagmire (plural quagmires)
- A swampy, soggy area of ground.
- (figuratively) A perilous, mixed up and troubled situation; a hopeless tangle; a predicament.
quagmire (third-person singular simple present quagmires, present participle quagmiring, simple past and past participle quagmired)
- (transitive) To embroil (a person, etc.) in complexity or difficulty.