\ ˈslab How to pronounce slab (audio) \

Definition of slab

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a thick plate or slice (as of stone, wood, or bread): such as
a : the outside piece cut from a log in squaring it
b : concrete pavement (as of a road) specifically : a strip of concrete pavement laid as a single unjointed piece
c(1) : a flat rectangular architectural element that is usually formed of a single piece or mass a concrete foundation slab
(2) : a rectangular building having little width with respect to its length and usually height
2 : something that resembles a slab (as in size, shape, or density) backed up by a solid slab of reference materialThe Times Literary Supplement (London)
3 : a hard plastic holder for a collectible coin and an identifying insert


slabbed; slabbing

Definition of slab (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : to remove an outer slab from slab a log
b : to divide or form into slabs
2 : to cover or support (something, such as a roadbed or roof) with slabs
3 : to put on thickly



Definition of slab (Entry 3 of 3)

dialectal, chiefly England

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Other Words from slab


slablike \ ˈslab-​ˌlīk How to pronounce slablike (audio) \ adjective

Examples of slab in a Sentence


a thick slab of homemade bread

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Top with a little slab of butter and a generous dash of Chook Chicken Salt Roll up aluminum foil and secure edges by folding them over to create boat shape (similar to rolling a burrito). Brittany Anas, The Know, "What Colorado’s top chefs cook when they go camping," 12 Aug. 2019 The scientists outfitted it with a special tactile sensor called GelSight—a slab of transparent, synthetic rubber that works as an imaging system. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "MIT Teaching Robots to Combine Sight and Touch," 17 June 2019 Tectonic plates—those interlocking slabs of Earth’s crust that fit together like puzzle pieces—constantly move about, with some slipping below others and diving into the planet’s interior in a process called subduction. Shannon Hall, Scientific American, "Venus, Earth’s Evil Twin, Beckons Space Agencies," 12 June 2019 Are the piers in the 1111 Lincoln Road complex in Miami Beach just solid slabs of concrete? Ian Volner, WSJ, "Swiss Architecture Firm Herzog & De Meuron Celebrates 40 Years," 4 Nov. 2018 The Motherload includes pulled pork, brisket, sausage and turkey, a half-slab of ribs and a half-chicken, plus six side dishes. Jeff Piorkowski/special To,, "City Barbeque opening in Beachwood in late 2018," 6 Apr. 2018 Others are custom-made, including the master bedroom’s nightstands and headboard, a slab of wood Simone bought online from Northern California. Danielle Fox, ELLE Decor, "Kim Kardashian’s Stylist Simone Harouche Is Now An Interior Designer, Too," 6 Apr. 2018 Eventually, this trend will get out of hand, and some carmaker will buck the trend and make an old-fashioned, slab-sided car that sells like crazy. Ray Magliozzi,, "Car Talk: These ‘dented’ doors do no good," 11 Aug. 2019 Once caramel is completely cool, transfer slab on parchment to a cutting board. Gemma Tarlach, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Bounty of the bees extends far beyond honey for your tea - to lotions, balms and even drinks," 16 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Slabhead was slabbing his head against every ball that came within his orbit, with Tammy Abraham duly confirming to the gravitational pull of his pocket., "90min's Definitive European Player Power Rankings: Week 1," 12 Aug. 2019 Brazil, which primarily exports slab steel to US manufacturers, is hoping to escape by agreeing on limited quotas for more sophisticated products. Jack Ewing And Ana Swanson,, "US allies brace for trade war as tariff negotiations stall," 29 Apr. 2018 Brazil, which primarily exports slab steel to American manufacturers, is hoping to escape by agreeing on limited quotas for more sophisticated products. Jack Ewing And Ana Swanson, New York Times, "U.S. Allies Brace for Trade War as Tariff Negotiations Stall," 29 Apr. 2018 Wipers can be found in the same areas trolling crankbaits, slabbing, or using live bait. Tyler Mahoney, kansascity, "Fishing report: Looking for hot spots? Here's where the fish are biting | The Kansas City Star," 14 Mar. 2018 Try trolling crankbaits, slabbing, or using live bait. Tyler Mahoney, kansascity, "Fishing report: Prospects should improve if the winds stay calm | The Kansas City Star," 7 Mar. 2018

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1703, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1605, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for slab


Middle English slabbe


akin to Middle English slabben to wallow, obsolete Danish slab muck

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Dictionary Entries near slab





slabbed tie



Statistics for slab

Last Updated

12 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for slab

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

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More Definitions for slab



English Language Learners Definition of slab

: a thick, flat piece of a hard material (such as stone or wood)
: a thick, flat piece of food (such as bread or meat)


\ ˈslab How to pronounce slab (audio) \

Kids Definition of slab

: a flat thick piece or slice a slab of stone

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More from Merriam-Webster on slab

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with slab

Spanish Central: Translation of slab

Nglish: Translation of slab for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of slab for Arabic Speakers

Comments on slab

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


authorized for issue (as a bond)

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