catch napping

Definition of catch napping

:to suddenly put (someone) in a position of being unprepared to deal with a situation because of not paying attention
  • When the problem appeared again, the government was caught napping.

Word by Word Definitions

catch play
  1. : to capture or seize especially after pursuit

  2. : to take or entangle in or as if in a snare

  3. : deceive

  1. : something caught

  2. : the act, action, or fact of catching

  3. : a game in which a ball is thrown and caught

nap play napping
  1. : to sleep briefly especially during the day : doze

  2. : to be off guard

  1. : a short sleep especially during the day : snooze

  1. : a hairy or downy surface (as on a fabric)

  1. : to raise a nap on (fabric or leather)

  1. : a pick or recommendation as a good bet to win a contest (such as a horse race)

  1. : to pick or single out in a nap


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