\ ˈnäd How to pronounce nod (audio) \
nodded; nodding

Definition of nod

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to make a quick downward motion of the head whether deliberately (as in expressing assent or salutation) or involuntarily (as from drowsiness) She nodded in agreement. The guard nodded to us as we walked in. He sat nodding by the fire.
2 : to incline or sway from the vertical as though ready to fall signposts nodding in the wind
3 : to bend or sway the upper part gently downward or forward : bob gently the plumes that nodded on his helmet nodding flowers on long stems
4 : to make a slip or error in a moment of abstraction … Fuentes nods, and his language then falls into … an overly learned mumbo-jumbo that stops the drama of his action.— Robert Maurer

transitive verb

1 : to incline downward or forward nodded his head in agreement
2 : to bring, invite, or send by a nod nodded us in
3 : to signify by a nod nodded their approval



Definition of nod (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act or an instance of nodding gave a nod of greeting
2 : an indication especially of approval or recognition

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Other Words from nod


nodder noun

Synonyms for nod

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of nod in a Sentence

Verb She nodded when I asked her if she was ready. I asked her if she could hear me, and she nodded her head. “The bathroom is around the corner,” he said, nodding to the left. She nodded toward the dirty dishes and said she would get to them later.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb This take on bananas Foster uses seasonal peaches and tropical ingredients like pineapple and coconut that nod to the classic dish. Christian Reynoso, San Francisco Chronicle, 23 July 2021 Panic is littered with moments that nod to Natalie’s riveting chaos as the ruler of her peers’ fates. Ariana Romero,, 31 May 2021 Or shake up cocktails that nod to great Georgia O'Keefe works. Katia Hetter, CNN, 29 May 2021 For vacation earrings, think super dangly drops embellished with earthy rattan, wood, and seashells that nod to the natural island scenery by which you’re hopefully surrounded. Madeline Fass, Vogue, 27 May 2021 Many museums and galleries boast impressive collections that nod to those geographies and civilizations. Nafeesah Allen, House Beautiful, 19 May 2021 The titles of her later books nod to desire and its cost: Lethal Seduction, Deadly Embrace, Dangerous Kiss. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, 26 June 2021 As always, make sure to nod and make eye contact, too. Steve Strauss, USA TODAY, 24 June 2021 For the ongoing collaborations, Mock wanted to involve his family back in Hawaii, as a way to nod to his roots. Christian Allaire, Vogue, 14 June 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The shares jumped 38 percent on the day the FDA gave its official nod, adding more than $16 billion to the company’s market capitalization., 26 July 2021 Tracee Ellis Ross received her fifth nod for outstanding lead actress in a comedy series for her role in black-ish. Paul Grein, Billboard, 13 July 2021 Correa, a shortstop who received his second All-Star nod this season, chose to skip the game to spend time with his wife Daniella, who is pregnant with the couple's first child. Kristie Rieken, Star Tribune, 8 July 2021 Alex Trebek earned a posthumous Daytime Emmy nomination for Outstanding Game Show Host while Drew Barrymore received her first nod in the Outstanding Entertainment Talk Show Host category. Lynette Rice,, 24 June 2021 Any president's first venture abroad is closely watched for its symbolic nod to foreign policy priorities. Melissa Mahtani, CNN, 10 June 2021 But the biggest cheer went up after his nod to the school board candidate — little known outside her county, but a figure on the CRT front lines. Washington Post, 7 June 2021 Scherff has four Pro Bowl berths in six seasons with Washington – despite missing 16 of 48 games over the past three seasons – and was franchised in March for the second consecutive season after getting his first All-Pro nod for the 2020 season. Ryan Ford, Detroit Free Press, 8 May 2021 Here’s Best Actor nominee for The Wrestler Mickey Rourke (center, two up from the Oscar statue) rocking an incredibly Mickey Rourke–esque lewk to celebrate his nod. Zach Schonfeld, Vulture, 23 Apr. 2021

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


circa 1541, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for nod


Middle English nodden; perhaps akin to Old High German hnotōn to shake

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Time Traveler for nod

Time Traveler

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

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Last Updated

26 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Nod.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for nod



English Language Learners Definition of nod

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to move your head up and down as a way of answering "yes" or of showing agreement, understanding, or approval
: to move your head up and down as a signal to someone or as a way of saying hello or goodbye to someone
: to slightly move your head in a specified direction



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

: a movement of your head up and down especially as a way of answering "yes" or of showing agreement, understanding, or approval : an act of nodding
somewhat informal : something done to show that someone or something has been chosen, approved, etc.


\ ˈnäd How to pronounce nod (audio) \
nodded; nodding

Kids Definition of nod

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to bend the head up and down one or more times He nodded in agreement.
2 : to move up and down She nodded her head. Daisies nodded in the breeze.
3 : to tip the head in a certain direction He nodded toward the door.
nod off
: to fall asleep



Kids Definition of nod (Entry 2 of 2)

: the action of bending the head up and down

More from Merriam-Webster on nod

Nglish: Translation of nod for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of nod for Arabic Speakers


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