follow Dictionary.com

Get the details behind our redesign

nab

[nab] /næb/
verb (used with object), nabbed, nabbing. Informal.
1.
to arrest or capture.
2.
to catch or seize, especially suddenly.
3.
to snatch or steal.
Origin
1675-1685
1675-85; earlier nap; perhaps < Scandinavian; compare Danish nappe, Norwegian, Swedish nappa to snatch
Related forms
nabber, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples for nabbed
  • But its new employees were of high quality, even though it might have nabbed a few better candidates by waiting.
  • The cameras were installed on a beltway and nabbed speeders.
  • There was plenty of interplanetary booty to be nabbed.
  • We nabbed the top of the chimney and came back up with a chunk of sulfide in a box, she says.
  • If you get nabbed, you're potentially on the hook for fines ranging into the thousands of dollars.
  • Now they win them when yet another leader is nabbed.
  • Now there are few big network airlines left to be nabbed.
  • He has nabbed the ministries of finance, defence and public works for himself.
  • Doug is always being nabbed by the police, but he is seen serving only one jail term.
  • Lawmen nabbed four officers and two civilians last week.
British Dictionary definitions for nabbed

nab

/næb/
verb (transitive) (informal) nabs, nabbing, nabbed
1.
to arrest
2.
to catch (someone) in wrongdoing
3.
to seize suddenly; snatch
Word Origin
C17: perhaps of Scandinavian origin; compare Danish nappe, Swedish nappa to snatch. See kidnap
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for nabbed
nab
"to catch (someone), 1686, probably a variant of dial. nap "to seize, catch, lay hold of" (1673, now surviving only in kidnap), which is possibly from Scand. (cf. Norw. nappe "to catch, snatch;" Swed. nappa; Dan. nappe "to pinch, pull"), reinforced by M.E. napand "grasping, greedy."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for nabbed

nab

noun

(also nabs) A police officer or detective (1950s+ Street gang)

verb

To catch; seize; arrest; collar: The officers nabbed him around the corner (1686+)

[fr dialect nap as in kidnap, perhaps related to Swedish nappa, ''catch,'' or Danish nappe, ''pull''; probably related to nip; the noun sense is recorded in British criminal slang by 1813]


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source
Related Abbreviations for nabbed

NAB

  1. National Association of Broadcasters
  2. New American Bible
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source

Word of The Day

Difficulty index for nab

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for nabbed

11
14
Scrabble Words With Friends