verb (1)
\ ˈswät How to pronounce swat (audio) \
swatted; swatting

Definition of swat

 (Entry 1 of 4)

transitive verb

: to hit with a sharp slapping blow usually with an instrument (such as a bat or flyswatter) swatted the ball for a home run


noun (1)

Definition of swat (Entry 2 of 4)

1 : a powerful or crushing blow
2 : a long hit in baseball especially : home run


verb (2)
swatted; swatting; swats

Definition of swat (Entry 3 of 4)

transitive + intransitive

: to make a false report of an ongoing serious crime in order to elicit a response from law enforcement (such as the dispatch of a SWAT unit) Special FBI Agent John Bennett of San Francisco said in a statement to CBS, that those who swat want to see "a tactical response" – specifically, they "want to see armed officers, they want to see a bomb, dogs, helicopters – that's all part of the fun."— Bryn Lovitt The congresswoman had just been "swatted," or subjected to a malicious act in which a person hides their identity, then calls the cops and reports a violent crime at the address of whomever they're targeting.— Ryan Grenoble


noun (2), often attributive
\ ˈswät How to pronounce SWAT (audio) \

Definition of SWAT (Entry 4 of 4)

: a police or military unit specially trained and equipped to handle unusually hazardous situations or missions

Other Words from swat

Verb (2)

swatting noun
Prosecutors say that in addition to initiating the swatting episode in Kansas … Mr. Barriss made dozens of other, similar calls to emergency and law enforcement agencies across the country during which he falsely reported bomb threats, active shootings and other criminal activity at high schools, shopping malls and even the Federal Bureau of Investigation. — Matt Stevens and Andrew R. Chow

Examples of swat in a Sentence

Verb (1) She swatted the fly with a magazine. The cat was swatting the injured mouse with its paw. He swatted the tennis ball out of bounds. Noun (1) the impatient toddler got a swat on his wrist for stepping into the street by himself
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb In 2003, Syracuse’s impossibly long-limbed Hakim Warrick rocketed out to the 3-point line to swat away Michael Lee’s open look at a game-tying shot for Kansas in the final seconds. New York Times, 1 Apr. 2022 Climate change and habitat loss from big agriculture are combining to swat down global insect populations, with each problem making the other worse, a new study finds. Seth Borenstein, ajc, 20 Apr. 2022 As anyone who has tried to swat a fly can attest, many of these buzzing pests have incredibly keen vision and fast reaction times. Monique Brouillette, Scientific American, 20 Apr. 2022 The 76ers big man went up with it, but so did Anteokounmpo who took one step from across the paint to swat it away with 1.6 seconds left. Jim Owczarski, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 29 Mar. 2022 Marchand tried to swat it out of the air and into the net, but couldn’t. BostonGlobe.com, 21 Mar. 2022 But there was no margin for error with 16 seconds to play and a high leaper approaching the rim, only for Zubac to swat away the threat. Andrew Greif, Los Angeles Times, 27 Feb. 2022 Our guide would remove enormous Anacondas blocking our path or swat away prehistoric-looking tarantulas. Jim Dobson, Forbes, 28 Dec. 2021 After Sebastián Blanco hopped in front of goal to swat away a few penalty kicks from teammates during a shooting drill at the training facility in Beaverton, the star midfielder was asked if a move to goalkeeper might be in his future. oregonlive, 19 Nov. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The pair didn’t disappoint, as Antetokounmpo scored 40 points, pulled down 16 rebounds and had three blocks – including the winning swat of an Embiid put-back attempt with 1.6 seconds left in the game. Jim Owczarski, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 29 Mar. 2022 The Warriors outlasted Merrimack Valley Conference foe Central Catholic, 49-47, on Sunday, as Hanscom totaled 24 points, 7 rebounds, 3 steals, 2 assists, and 2 blocks – including a swat in the final seconds to help preserve the win. Trevor Hass, BostonGlobe.com, 9 Feb. 2022 Davison swatted the ball away from around the rim as time expired, and Houston coach Kelvin Sampson wanted a goal-tending call on Davison's swat. Tommy Deas, USA TODAY, 12 Dec. 2021 Houston coach Kelvin Sampson and several players followed the officials off the court, arguing Davison's swat was goaltending. John Zenor, Chron, 12 Dec. 2021 In April, Baltimore Police and the FBI swat team executed raids on their homes. Justin Fenton, baltimoresun.com, 20 Aug. 2021 Khris Middleton's shots and Giannis Antetokounmpo's swat ended those thoughts. Brian Mahoney, Star Tribune, 16 July 2021 Khris Middleton's shots and Giannis Antetokounmpo's swat ended those thoughts. Brian Mahoney, ajc, 16 July 2021 Among the best: LeBron James’s late Game 7 swat of Andre Iguodala in the 2016 N.B.A. finals against a favored team on the road. New York Times, 15 July 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of swat

Verb (1)

circa 1796, in the meaning defined above

Noun (1)

circa 1800, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb (2)

2007, in the meaning defined above

Noun (2)

1968, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for swat

Verb (1)

English dialect, to squat, alteration of English squat

Verb (2)

verbal derivative of swat

Noun (2)

special weapons and tactics

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Last Updated

23 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Swat.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/swat. Accessed 28 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for swat


\ ˈswät How to pronounce swat (audio) \
swatted; swatting

Kids Definition of swat

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to hit with a quick hard blow I swatted a fly.



Kids Definition of swat (Entry 2 of 2)

: a hard blow

Swat geographical name

\ ˈswät How to pronounce Swat (audio) \

Definition of Swat

river 400 miles (644 kilometers) long in Pakistan flowing into the Kabul River

More from Merriam-Webster on swat

Nglish: Translation of swat for Spanish Speakers


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