nick

noun
\ ˈnik How to pronounce nick (audio) \

Definition of nick

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a small notch, groove, or chip For one thing, formal chairs, beds and tables require greater vigilance on the part of the owners to protect against nicks and spills.— Sarah Collins
b : a small cut or wound got a few nicks from shaving
c : a break in one strand of two-stranded DNA caused by a missing phosphodiester bond
2 : a final critical moment in the nick of time
3 British, informal : prison also : police station … he said to me, "And how was it in the nick? Did they beat you in there at all?" — Colin MacInnes
4 British, informal : condition in good nick

nick

verb
nicked; nicking; nicks

Definition of nick (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to jot down : record
2a : to make a nick in : notch, chip … her favorite haunts are … department stores where she scores deep discounts on nicked furniture sold off the floor.— Heather Lobdell
b : to cut into or wound slightly nicked himself shaving I didn't have time to get my glove up, and the ball nicked my ear as it went past me.— Steve Wulf
3 : to cut short cold weather, which nicked steel and automobile outputTime
4 : to catch at the right point or time
5 : cheat, overcharge "A cry of anguish ascended to high heavens," reported Business Week in 1933, "when millions of white-collar workers discovered that they had been nicked for a considerable percentage of their earnings when J. P. Morgan and partners had paid no income tax at all."— Cynthia Crossen
6a British slang : arrest The new owner, my brother, had installed all the window grilles and had them wired on a direct alarm to the police station so that if anyone tried to enter that way they would be nicked.— Dick Francis
b British slang : steal To discover at the last moment that 24 cases of Schweppes had been nicked from the cellar was a horrible shock.Sunday Times

intransitive verb

1 : to make petty attacks : snipe
2 : to complement one another genetically and produce superior offspring

Examples of nick in a Sentence

Noun There are a couple of nicks on the painting. His face was covered with nicks and cuts after shaving. She spent a night in the nick. an economy in bad nick Verb He was nicked on the shoulder by a bullet. She was nicked for the theft. I nicked a couple of cars when I was younger. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun This pyrrhic victory comes at a tremendous cost: the deaths of Eddie and Max, although El manages to revive Max's heart remotely in the nick of time. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, 17 July 2022 Rescuers reached the woman, who was hanging onto a tree and her dog, just in the nick of time, Wellton Police Sgt. Abigail Adams, PEOPLE.com, 13 June 2022 Luckily, Danny performs a spacewalk in the nick of time — but not before Karen’s second husband and Polaris co-founder Sam (Jeff Hephner) is among the dead. Hunter Ingram, Variety, 10 June 2022 Madison shows up in the nick of time and easily kills half a dozen men with her gun without hitting Mo. Erik Kain, Forbes, 8 June 2022 But the international flags were hoisted Wednesday morning, just in the nick of time. Lori Nickel, Journal Sentinel, 3 June 2022 Stories of a couple who makes it against all odds, of a woman who leaves her controlling boyfriend in the nick of time, of would-be lovers who pine for each other in silence, of a priest who falls in love with his choir director. Leila Cobo, Billboard, 27 May 2022 Then, in the nick of time, Silas arrived at 11:31 p.m. Sydney Page, Washington Post, 17 May 2022 Ruddy personally staved off a Mob war, and averted every possible disaster in the nick of time, and possibly invented a cure for cancer and probably saved the whales. David Fear, Rolling Stone, 28 Apr. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Houston could nick 100 degrees any day through Sunday before simmering back into the mid 90s. Matthew Cappucci, Washington Post, 9 June 2022 The sponge protects the dolphins from sharp rocks and coral that would otherwise nick their faces. Daisy Hernandez, Popular Mechanics, 14 Apr. 2022 Ida will likely nick the economy’s growth in the current July-September quarter, though repairs and rebuilding efforts are expected to make up for some of that in the coming months. Christopher Rugaber, Anchorage Daily News, 16 Sep. 2021 Ida will likely nick the economy’s growth in the current July-September quarter, though repairs and rebuilding efforts are expected to regain those losses in the coming months. Christopher Rugaber, chicagotribune.com, 16 Sep. 2021 Ida will likely nick the economy’s growth in the current July-September quarter, though repairs and rebuilding efforts are expected to regain those losses in the coming months. BostonGlobe.com, 16 Sep. 2021 Ida will likely nick the economy's growth in the current July-September quarter, though repairs and rebuilding efforts are expected to regain those losses in the coming months. CBS News, 16 Sep. 2021 Meanwhile, Marquez, gifted with a 3-0 lead, was nicked for a run in each of the first two frames. Kyle Newman, The Denver Post, 26 July 2019 Kessel fired a shot that nicked the end of Allen's glove but still beat him off the far post and into the net. Richard Morin, azcentral, 31 Dec. 2019 See More

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

First Known Use of nick

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 2a

History and Etymology for nick

Noun

Middle English nyke, probably alteration of nocke nock

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Time Traveler for nick

Time Traveler

The first known use of nick was in the 15th century

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Dictionary Entries Near nick

Nicias

nick

nickar nut

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Statistics for nick

Last Updated

24 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Nick.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/nick. Accessed 14 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for nick

nick

noun
\ ˈnik How to pronounce nick (audio) \

Kids Definition of nick

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a small cut or chip in a surface
2 : the last moment We arrived at the dock in the nick of time.

nick

verb
nicked; nicking

Kids Definition of nick (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make a small cut or chip in

nick

noun
\ ˈnik How to pronounce nick (audio) \

Medical Definition of nick

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a break in one strand of two-stranded DNA caused by a missing phosphodiester bond

nick

transitive verb

Medical Definition of nick (Entry 2 of 2)

: to produce a nick in (DNA) circular DNA that has been nicked and closed

More from Merriam-Webster on nick

Nglish: Translation of nick for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of nick for Arabic Speakers

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