1

grab

play
verb \ˈgrab\

Definition of grab

grabbed

;

grabbing

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to take or seize by or as if by a sudden motion or grasp <grab up an ax> <grabbed the opportunity> <grab attention>

  3. 2 :  to obtain without consideration of what is right or wrong <grab public lands>

  4. 3 :  to take hastily <grab a bite to eat> <grab a cab>

  5. 4a :  to seize the attention of <the technique of grabbing an audience — Pauline Kael>b :  to impress favorably and deeply

  6. intransitive verb
  7. :  to make a sudden snatch

grabber

noun

Examples of grab in a sentence

  1. I have to go back in the house and grab my car keys.

  2. The little boy grabbed onto his mother's leg and wouldn't let go.

  3. I'll grab a taxi and meet you there.

  4. Let's grab a bite to eat before the movie starts.

  5. The store had a lot of nice stuff, but nothing really grabbed me.

  6. The play grabs the audience from the opening scene.

  7. One player in particular has been grabbing a lot of attention lately.

Origin and Etymology of grab

obsolete Dutch or Low German grabben


First Known Use: circa 1581

Synonym Discussion of grab

take, seize, grasp, clutch, snatch, grab mean to get hold of by or as if by catching up with the hand. take is a general term applicable to any manner of getting something into one's possession or control <take some salad from the bowl>. seize implies a sudden and forcible movement in getting hold of something tangible or an apprehending of something fleeting or elusive when intangible <seized the suspect>. grasp stresses a laying hold so as to have firmly in possession <grasp the handle and pull>. clutch suggests avidity or anxiety in seizing or grasping and may imply less success in holding <clutching her purse>. snatch suggests more suddenness or quickness but less force than seize <snatched a doughnut and ran>. grab implies more roughness or rudeness than snatch <grabbed roughly by the arm>.

2

grab

adjective

Definition of grab

  1. 1 :  intended to be taken, seized, or grasped suddenly <a grab rail>

  2. 2 :  taken at random <grab samples of rocks>

Origin and Etymology of grab

see 1grab


First Known Use: 1608


3

grab

noun

Definition of grab

  1. 1a :  something taken, seized, or grasped suddenlyb :  a sudden snatchc :  an unlawful or unethical seizure <a grab for power>

  2. 2 chiefly British a :  a device for clutching an objectb :  clamshell 2a

up for grabs

  1. :  available for anyone to take, win, or settle <A lot of voters are still up for grabs.>

Examples of grab in a sentence

  1. <a political activist who thinks the government's lease of public lands to logging companies amounts to an illegal land grab>

Origin and Etymology of grab

see 1grab


First Known Use: 1777



GRAB Defined for English Language Learners

1

grab

play
verb \ˈgrab\

Definition of grab for English Language Learners

  • : to quickly take and hold (someone or something) with your hand or arms

  • : to take or get (something) in a quick and informal way

  • : to get the attention or interest of (someone or something)


3

grab

noun

Definition of grab for English Language Learners

  • : a quick attempt to take or get something

  • : the act of taking something in a forceful or illegal way


GRAB Defined for Kids

1

grab

play
verb \ˈgrab\

Definition of grab for Students

grabbed

grabbing

  1. :  to grasp or seize suddenly


2

grab

play
noun

Definition of grab for Students

  1. :  a sudden attempt to grasp or seize



Seen and Heard

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

WORD OF THE DAY

possibly but not certainly

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

  • m-ws-new-words-quiz
  • Which word means "inability to recognize faces"?
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