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[nuhb-in] /ˈnʌb ɪn/
a small lump or stunted piece; stub.
a small or imperfect ear of corn.
an undeveloped fruit.
Origin of nubbin
1685-95, Americanism; perhaps nub + -in, variant of -ing1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for nubbin
Historical Examples
  • Bimeby they wa'n't no stick left—only a nubbin, about four inches long, an' it was Rocky's turn.

    The Turtles of Tasman Jack London
  • He warmed the remaining half-can of salmon and whittled at his nubbin of bread.

    The Promise James B. Hendryx
  • The low altitude of nubbin Ridge made me sallow; there was no blood in my cheeks.

    The Homesteader Oscar Micheaux
  • Throwing a nubbin to the calf to catch the cow, as you say in Virginia, eh?

    Shadows of Flames Amelie Rives
  • Living in quaint old "nubbin Ridge," could not, to say the most, be called illustrious.

    The Homesteader Oscar Micheaux
  • The Condor stretched his broad wings and settled himself comfortably on a nubbin of sandstone.

    The Trail Book Mary Austin
  • Lincoln whispered to his friend, "Did you ever see so small a nubbin that had so much husk on it?"

    The Battle of Principles Newell Dwight Hillis
  • Presently she walked into the little room, lit a nubbin of candle, and changed into her best clothes.

    The Rich Little Poor Boy Eleanor Gates
  • Lincoln quietly said to Seward: "This is the largest shucking for so small a nubbin that I ever saw."

    Lincoln's Yarns and Stories Alexander K. McClure
  • Chung wasn't built for times as hectic as the last few hours, and was worn to a nubbin.

    Industrial Revolution Poul William Anderson
British Dictionary definitions for nubbin


(mainly US & Canadian) something small or undeveloped, esp a fruit or ear of corn
Word Origin
C19: diminutive of nub
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 nubbin

"stunted ear of corn," 1690s, American English diminutive of nub. General sense of "small piece" is from 1857.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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