Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

snail

play
noun \ˈsnāl\

Simple Definition of snail

  • : a small animal that lives in a shell that it carries on its back, that moves very slowly, and that can live in water or on land

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of snail

  1. 1 :  a gastropod mollusk especially when having an external enclosing spiral shell

  2. 2 :  a slow-moving or sluggish person or thing

snaillike

play \ˈsnāl-ˌlīk\ adjective

Examples of snail in a sentence

  1. <go and tell the snails in the back to hurry up>



Origin and Etymology of snail

Middle English, from Old English snægl; akin to Old High German snecko snail, snahhan to creep


First Known Use: before 12th century


2

snail

intransitive verb

Definition of snail

  1. :  to move, act, or go slowly or lazily



Examples of snail in a sentence

  1. <the highway construction work created a bottleneck that had cars snailing for the next five miles>



1582

First Known Use of snail

1582



SNAIL Defined for Kids

snail

play
noun \ˈsnāl\

Definition of snail for Students

  1. :  a small slow-moving mollusk that has a spiral shell into which it can draw itself for safety and that can live either on land or in water




Medical Dictionary

snail

play
noun \ˈsnā(ə)l\

Medical Definition of snail

  1. :  any of various gastropod mollusks and especially those having an external enclosing spiral shell including some which are important in medicine as intermediate hosts of trematodes




Learn More about snail


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up snail? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

to lessen in amount, effect, or force

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

two-chairs-on-a-pier-by-the-ocean-in-summer

Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?

hiemal vernal brumal estival
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ