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8 Wintry Words to Defrost Your Vocabulary

nip1

[nip] /nɪp/
verb (used with object), nipped, nipping.
1.
to squeeze or compress tightly between two surfaces or points; pinch; bite.
2.
to take off by pinching, biting, or snipping (usually followed by off):
He nipped off a piece of steak and gave it to the dog.
3.
to check in growth or development.
4.
to affect sharply and painfully or injuriously, as a very cold temperature:
a cold wind that nips the fingers.
5.
Informal. to snatch away suddenly.
6.
Informal. to defeat (an opponent) by a very close margin; edge.
7.
Informal. to steal or pilfer.
8.
Nautical.
  1. (of ice) to press (a ship) from opposite sides.
  2. to seize (a taut rope) to another rope.
verb (used without object), nipped, nipping.
9.
Chiefly British Slang. to leave stealthily; sneak away; flee (often followed by away).
noun
10.
an act of nipping; a pinch or small bite:
The dog took several nips at our heels.
11.
a biting quality, as in cold or frosty air:
There's a nip in the air this morning.
12.
sharp cold; a sharp touch of frost:
The trees had felt the first nip of winter.
13.
a sharp or biting remark.
14.
a biting taste or tang, especially in some cheese.
15.
a small bit or quantity of anything:
a nip of bread to stave off hunger.
16.
Nautical.
  1. an abrupt turn or twist in a rope.
  2. a part of a rope or chain bound by a seizing or nipper.
17.
Usually, nips. nipper (def 2).
Idioms
18.
nip and tuck, with each competitor equaling or closely contesting the speed, scoring, or efforts of the other:
It was nip and tuck as to which sailboat would reach port first.
19.
nip in the bud. bud1 (def 11).
Origin
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English nyppe to pinch < Old Norse hnippa to poke, thrust
Synonyms
4. freeze, bite, pierce, cut, chill.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for nip and tuck

nip1

/nɪp/
verb (mainly transitive) nips, nipping, nipped
1.
to catch or tightly compress, as between a finger and the thumb; pinch
2.
(often foll by off) to remove by clipping, biting, etc
3.
when intr, often foll by at. to give a small sharp bite (to): the dog nipped at his heels
4.
(esp of the cold) to affect with a stinging sensation
5.
to harm through cold: the frost nipped the young plants
6.
to check or destroy the growth of (esp in the phrase nip in the bud)
7.
(slang) to steal
8.
(intransitive; foll by along, up, out, etc) (Brit, informal) to hurry; dart
9.
(slang, mainly US & Canadian) to snatch
noun
10.
the act of nipping; a pinch, snip, etc
11.
  1. a frosty or chilly quality
  2. severe frost or cold: the first nip of winter
12.
a small piece or quantity: he went out for a nip of fresh air
13.
a sharp flavour or tang
14.
(archaic) a taunting remark
15.
nip and tuck
  1. (mainly US & Canadian) neck and neck
  2. (informal) plastic surgery performed for cosmetic reasons
16.
(Austral & NZ, slang) put the nips in, to exert pressure on someone, esp in order to extort money
Word Origin
C14: of Scandinavian origin; compare Old Norse hnippa to prod

nip2

/nɪp/
noun
1.
a small drink of spirits; dram
2.
(mainly Brit) a measure of spirits usually equal to one sixth of a gill
verb nips, nipping, nipped
3.
to drink (spirits), esp habitually in small amounts
Word Origin
C18: shortened from nipperkin a vessel holding a half-pint or less, of uncertain origin; compare Dutch nippen to sip

Nip

/nɪp/
noun
1.
(slang) a derogatory word for a Japanese
Word Origin
C20: short for Nipponese
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 nip and tuck

nip

v.

"to pinch sharply; to bite suddenly," late 14c., related to Middle Low German nipen "to nip, to pinch," Middle Dutch nipen "to pinch," Dutch nijpen, Old Norse hnippa "to prod," but the exact evolution of the stem is obscure. Related: Nipped; nipping. To nip (something) in the bud in the figurative sense is first recorded c.1600.

n.

"small measure of spirits," 1796, shortening of nipperkin (1670s) "quantity of liquor of a half pint or less," possibly of Dutch or Low German origin and related to nip (v.). Reinforced by nip (n.2) on notion of "fragment or bit pinched off" (c.1600).

"a pinch; a sharp bite," 1540s, from nip (v.). Meaning "a chill in the weather" is from 1610s, probably so called for its effect on vegetation. Nip and tuck "a close thing" is recorded from 1832, perhaps from sailing or tailoring.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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nip and tuck in Culture

nip and tuck definition


Closely contested; neck and neck: “It was nip and tuck there for a while, but our team finally pulled through.”

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Slang definitions & phrases for nip and tuck

nip and tuck

adjective phrase
  1. Equally likely to win or lose; even; neck and neck: Near the finish they're nip and tuck
  2. Of equal probability; equally likely: It's nip and tuck whether I'll get there in time or not

[1857+; earlier versions included rip and tuck, nip and chuck, and nip and tack, making the original semantics somewhat difficult to assess; the term might be from sailing or from sewing and tailoring]


nip

noun

A small quantity, a taste, of a drink: Well, give me just a nip, then

[1796+; apparently fr nipperkin, ''small measure of drink,'' found by 1694]


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

NIP

National Immunization Program
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Idioms and Phrases with nip and tuck

nip and tuck

Very close so that the advantage or lead of competitors keeps shifting, as in It was nip and tuck whether they would deal with the bill before Congress adjourned. The precise allusion in this term has been lost. [ Early 1800s ]
Also see: neck and neck
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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