\ ˈnab How to pronounce nab (audio) \
nabbed; nabbing

Definition of nab

transitive verb

1 : to catch or seize in arrest : apprehend
2 : to seize suddenly

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Synonyms & Antonyms for nab


apprehend, arrest, bust [slang], collar, nail, nick [British slang], pick up, pinch, pull in, restrain, run in, seize



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Examples of nab in a Sentence

We nabbed seats in the front row of the theater. the officer nabbed the purse snatcher before he could escape

Recent Examples on the Web

The Celtics nabbed each with the third overall pick in consecutive drafts (2016 and 2017) despite neither player being the most popular choice. Gary Washburn,, "Anthony Davis is off the market, so the Celtics must find a new path forward," 16 June 2019 Netflix nabbed the rights to the seven-book Narnia series from the C.S. Lewis Company in 2018. Angela Watercutter, WIRED, "Denis Villeneuve Is Working on a Dune Series," 13 June 2019 Dentino nabbed the state title in a gripping playoff hole with Noblesville's Clay Merchent Indianapolis Star CARMEL — Nick Dentino didn’t allow the past to repeat itself. Tyler Kraft, Indianapolis Star, "Carmel, Dentino sweep boys state golf tournament," 12 June 2019 The Ferryman, the night's second biggest winner, nabbed four awards. Joe Lynch, Billboard, "Here Are All the Winners From the 2019 Tony Awards," 9 June 2019 The play nabbed three other Tonys, including one for director Sam Mendes. Peter Marks, Washington Post, "Tony Awards 2019: ‘Hadestown’ wins best musical, and ‘The Ferryman’ snags best play," 9 June 2019 Amy Klobuchar nabbed an Iowa endorsement for her mental health policy work. NBC News, "Democratic rivals pile on Biden," 6 June 2019 Miami nabbed a pair of Vanderbilt teammates (LHP Zach King and first baseman Julian Infante) to go along with fourth overall pick JJ Bleday. Wells Dusenbury,, "Marlins wrap up MLB draft class, adding Air Force slugger, Vanderbilt teammates and more on Day 3," 6 June 2019 The team nabbed samples of these rocks from the flanks of the baby volcano, so studies of this material and of the surrounding region can help researchers start piecing together the picture. National Geographic, "Strange waves rippled around Earth. Now we may know why.," 21 May 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'nab.' 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 nab

1686, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for nab

perhaps alteration of English dialect nap

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Statistics for nab

Last Updated

20 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for nab

The first known use of nab was in 1686

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More Definitions for nab



English Language Learners Definition of nab

: to catch and stop or arrest (someone)
: to take or get (something) quickly and often in a way that is clever or rude


\ ˈnab How to pronounce nab (audio) \
nabbed; nabbing

Kids Definition of nab

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More from Merriam-Webster on nab

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with nab

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for nab

Spanish Central: Translation of nab

Nglish: Translation of nab for Spanish Speakers

Comments on nab

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showing courage and determination

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