jab

verb
\ˈjab \
jabbed; jabbing

Definition of jab 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to pierce with or as if with a sharp object : stab

b : to poke quickly or abruptly : thrust

2 : to strike with a short straight blow

3 : to pointedly tease or mock (someone) We joke around. … I was jabbing him about injuries he's had.Sports Illustrated

intransitive verb

1 : to make quick or abrupt thrusts with a sharp object

2 : to strike a person with a short straight blow

3 : to pointedly tease, mock, or make fun of someone At a moment's notice, he can produce a months-old editorial cartoon jabbing at him and seems genuinely hurt by the message.The New York Times

jab

noun

Definition of jab (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act of jabbing especially : a short straight boxing punch delivered with the leading hand

2 : a pointed and often mocking comment or criticism He has a lot of fun with Ranovic, the oh-so-dramatic, eager young undercover cop who consistently fails to understand Salter's ironic jabs.— Jean MacFarlane Wright Undeterred, McCain continues with his standard stump speech, leaving in all the anti-Bush jabs.— Michelle Cottle

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Examples of jab in a Sentence

Verb

He jabbed at the other player with his hockey stick. The needle jabbed his arm. The needle jabbed into his arm.

Noun

She gave him a jab in the ribs. He threw a right jab to his opponent's body.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Sessions has occasionally seemed to jab back at Trump. Matt Zapotosky, Washington Post, "‘We just need to keep pushing on’: Why Trump’s attacks won’t make Jeff Sessions quit," 5 June 2018 De León has jabbed Feinstein for being out of touch with voters and argued Californians are clamoring for change. Taryn Luna, sacbee, "Number two spot in U.S. Senate race up for grabs," 5 June 2018 Even Covered California, the ACA marketplace, has jabbed at the feds. Ana B. Ibarra, latimes.com, "California leads nation in pushing back against Trump health policies," 19 Apr. 2018 Sheriff's Deputy Aaron Sieczkowski remembers rushing into a crowded Southeast Portland homeless shelter in April and locking eyes with an angry man jabbing his neck with a knife and gushing blood. Aimee Green, OregonLive.com, "Police officers describe 'pandemonium' during fatal homeless shelter shooting," 11 June 2018 De León jabbed Feinstein for being out of touch with voters and argued Californians are clamoring for change. Taryn Luna, sacbee, "Number two spot in U.S. Senate race up for grabs," 5 June 2018 But happy couples with bouquets and rings are certainly an easier sell than people jabbing needles into their necks. Heather Knight, San Francisco Chronicle, "San Francisco would defy federal law with safe injection sites," 21 May 2018 There was no initial goal call on the play, reminiscent of a sequence in Game 2 in which the red goal light remained unlit after Pittsburgh's Patric Hornqvist jabbed at it from in front. Will Graves, baltimoresun.com, "Guentzel's two goals help Penguins beat Capitals, 3-1, even series at 2," 3 May 2018 The pass sped past the outstretched foot of one Dash defender to Heath, who jabbed the ball past Campbell as another defender rode her hip. Glynn A. Hill, Houston Chronicle, "Dash's unbeaten streak ends with loss to Thorns," 22 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

And in another jab at the beverage industry, the initiative would enshrine in the California Constitution the right of local governments to impose soda taxes. Shelby Grad, latimes.com, "Essential California: How the L.A. sheriff's race is making history," 3 July 2018 Jefferson even worked in a jab at former teammate, a la Bill Russell. Julia Poe, SI.com, "Richard Jefferson Announces LeBron James Friendship Break Up To Stop Free Agency Questions," 27 June 2018 But President Trump tweeted that it was meant as a jab to the media. NBC News, "500 children separated from families have been reunited since May, officials claim," 22 June 2018 Former President Jimmy Carter started his commencement address at Liberty University in Virginia with a gentle jab at President Donald Trump. Fox News, "Jimmy Carter gently jabs Trump at Liberty commencement," 19 May 2018 But according to British and European royalty expert Marlene Koenig, it wasn't intended as a jab at Meghan by royal officials at all. Alex Warner, Marie Claire, "Here's Why Meghan Markle's Name Was Left Off the Royal Baby Announcement," 23 Apr. 2018 Now, Ingraham and her show are paying dearly for her jab. Madeleine Aggeler, The Cut, "All The Companies That Have Pulled Their Ads From Laura Ingraham’s Show," 6 Apr. 2018 Now, his latest jab is targeted at the president's response to Hurricane Harvey. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Obama's Photographer Trolls Trump's Response to Hurricane Harvey," 30 Aug. 2017 North Jersey and South Jersey residents took jabs at each other in the video — and Philadelphia. Michael Boren, Philly.com, "Central Jersey is a real place, Jon Stewart declares on Stephen Colbert show, with jab at Philly," 22 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'jab.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of jab

Verb

1827, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Noun

1872, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for jab

Verb

alteration of job to strike

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Statistics for jab

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Time Traveler for jab

The first known use of jab was in 1827

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More Definitions for jab

jab

verb

English Language Learners Definition of jab

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to push something sharp or hard quickly or suddenly into or toward someone or something

: to be pushed quickly and suddenly into someone or a part of someone's body

jab

noun

English Language Learners Definition of jab (Entry 2 of 2)

: a quick or sudden hit with something sharp or hard

boxing : a short, straight punch

: an injection of something (such as medicine) into your body with a needle

jab

verb
\ˈjab \
jabbed; jabbing

Kids Definition of jab

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to poke quickly or suddenly with or as if with something sharp He jabbed me with a stick.

jab

noun

Kids Definition of jab (Entry 2 of 2)

: a quick or sudden poke

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Comments on jab

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