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[hob-nob] /ˈhɒbˌnɒb/
verb (used without object), hobnobbed, hobnobbing.
to associate on very friendly terms (usually followed by with):
She often hobnobs with royalty.
Archaic. to drink together.
a friendly, informal chat.
Origin of hobnob
1595-1605; from the phrase hab or nab literally, have or have not, Old English habban to have + nabban not to have (ne not + habban to have) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for hobnob


verb -nobs, -nobbing, -nobbed (intransitive) often foll by with
to socialize or talk informally
(obsolete) to drink (with)
Word Origin
C18: from hob or nob to drink to one another in turns, hence, to be familiar, ultimately from Old English habban to have + nabban not to have
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for hobnob

1763, "to drink to each other," from hob and nob (1756) "to toast each other by turns, to buy alternate rounds of drinks," from c.1550 hab nab "to have or have not, hit or miss," probably ultimately from Old English habban, nabban "have, not have," with the negative particle ne- attached, as was customary. Modern sense of "socialize" is 1866. Related: Hobnobbed; hobnobbing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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