nim·ble | \ˈnim-bəl \
nimbler\ˈnim-b(ə-)lər \; nimblest\ˈnim-b(ə-)ləst \

Definition of nimble 

1 : quick and light in motion : agile nimble fingers a nimble climber

2a : marked by quick, alert, clever conception (see conception sense 3), comprehension (see comprehension sense 1a), or resourcefulness a nimble mind nimble investors

b : responsive, sensitive a nimble listener nothing like playacting to make you nimble in your feelings— Mary Austin

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from nimble

nimbleness \ˈnim-bəl-nəs \ noun
nimbly \ˈnim-blē \ adverb

Examples of nimble in a Sentence

possessing a nimble wit, he always has a cutting comeback for any intended insult thrown his way her nimble fingers make knitting look so easy

Recent Examples on the Web

But under the form-follows-function sheet metal is a wide-body compact car with good German engineering for a nimble and comfortable driving experience. Mark Maynard,, "2019 Volkswagen Jetta: 7th generation wide-body reboot," 6 July 2018 In that mode, composer Giacchino’s music is the most successful element, running nimble, beautifully orchestrated variations on themes that feel familiar in the best ways while retaining their spark. Michael Phillips,, "'Incredibles 2' review: Piling on the action in a 14-years-later sequel," 11 June 2018 But the newfound emphasis on rich, high caloric-marrow draws attention to the variety of practices that contributed to today’s nimble fingers. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian, "Did the Human Hand Evolve as a Lean Mean Bone-Smashing Machine?," 13 July 2018 And being nimble is a necessary part of the job when your boss is as fashion forward as Ms. Hadid. Liana Satenstein, Vogue, "Bella Hadid’s Bodyguard On Dressing to Impress the Paparazzi," 27 June 2018 The Accord’s wide, 39.4-foot turning circle is not nimble in the mall parking lot. Mark Maynard,, "2018 Honda Accord 2.0T: Near perfect, in an imperfect world," 1 June 2018 That makes this tall wagon more nimble in tight spaces and when executing U-turns. Malcolm Gunn,, "2018 Buick Enclave," 17 May 2018 This would allow the soldiers to be more nimble and agile, as approximately one-third of the weight soldiers carry is for the batteries to power their equipment. Chris Ciaccia, Fox News, "Air Force's Iron Man suit could also be used to power up gadgets," 12 July 2018 Decades later, Sears continues to face challenges, including declining mall traffic, major pension obligations and nimble physical competitors such as fashion deal destinations T.J. Maxx and Marshall’s. Charisse Jones, USA TODAY, "Sears, Kmart stores ailing as CEO Eddie Lampert's hedge fund gets hundreds of millions," 18 June 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of nimble

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for nimble

Middle English nimel, from Old English numol holding much, from niman to take; akin to Old High German neman to take, Greek nemein to distribute, manage, nomos pasture, nomos usage, custom, law

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about nimble

Dictionary Entries near nimble





nimble Kate

nimble will


Statistics for nimble

Last Updated

4 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for nimble

The first known use of nimble was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for nimble



English Language Learners Definition of nimble

: able to move quickly, easily, and lightly

: able to learn and understand things quickly and easily


nim·ble | \ˈnim-bəl \
nimbler; nimblest

Kids Definition of nimble

1 : quick and light in motion : agile a nimble dancer

2 : quick in understanding and learning : clever a nimble mind

Other Words from nimble

nimbleness noun
nimbly \-blē \ adverb Then the vendors had to dodge nimbly to avoid being trampled under the heavy hooves … — Laurence Yep, Dragonwings

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on nimble

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


required by fashion, etiquette, or custom

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Great Scrabble Words—A Quiz

  • scrabble-tiles-that-read-scrabble-quiz
  • Which of the following Q-without-U words means the number five in cards or dice?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!