\ 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

Story made another nice play to end the eighth, sliding on the outfield grass to nab Austin Hedges’ grounder and then throwing him out with a one-hopper. Bernie Wilson, The Denver Post, "Wil Myers’ walk-off single lifts Padres to 10th inning win over Rockies," 8 Sep. 2019 In 1993, burglars in Los Angeles began nabbing paintings off walls and grabbing expensive antiques and furniture from homes. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Help Find the Owners of More Than 100 Recovered Artworks," 6 Sep. 2019 Louisville's Bryson Tiller failed to nab an award at the 2019 MTV Video Music Awards losing to Normanl ft. Kathryn Gregory, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville's Bryson Tiller beaten out at the 2019 MTV Video Music Awards for Best R&B song," 26 Aug. 2019 Shawn Mendes recently nabbed his first campaign and stripped down for the brand, and Justin Bieber and the Kardashian-Jenner sisters have showed off their Calvins in the past too. Kara Nesvig, Teen Vogue, "Bella Hadid, Jacob Elordi, Diplo and Naomi Campbell Strip Down in the New Calvin Klein Campaign," 13 Aug. 2019 South Korea's political thriller Idol (Woo Sang) nabbed the Cheval Noir trophy for best feature and scored a best actor tie for Han Seok-kyu and Sul Kyung-gu at the Fantasia International Film Festival, where prizegiving is underway. Etan Vlessing, The Hollywood Reporter, "Korean Political Thriller 'Idol' Wins Top Prizes at Fantasia Film Fest," 23 July 2019 The team nabbed two straight NBA championships and made it to the finals this year before losing to the Toronto Raptors. Michelle Lou, CNN, "Kevin Durant to sign contract with Brooklyn Nets," 30 June 2019 The left side is split into 2X and 3X magnification for nabbing tricky brow hairs and getting eyeliner just right. Sophie Wirt, Allure, "9 Vanity Mirrors With Lights to Buy on Amazon if You're Leo Who Loves Looking at Yourself," 8 Aug. 2018 San Antonio police detectives nabbed Kino Jimenez, 30, without incident in nearby Universal City, Texas and booked him on a theft of person charge, according to the police department. Ben Tobin, USA TODAY, "Suspect arrested after viral video shows teen attacked for wearing MAGA hat," 6 July 2018

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

12 Sep 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

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


to spread over or through

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