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

Definition of swat

 (Entry 1 of 5)

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 5)

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 5)

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 5)

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


geographical name
\ ˈswät How to pronounce Swat (audio) \

Definition of Swat (Entry 5 of 5)

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

Keep scrolling for more

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
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb This feline hangout checks all the boxes, with soft, comfy surfaces, dangling fuzzy mouse toys to swat at and posts wrapped in sisal for impromptu clawing. Christina Vercelletto, CNN Underscored, "All the essentials your cat actually needs, according to vets," 5 Mar. 2021 The executive did his best to swat down any perception of chaos. Nicolás Rivero, Quartz, "Broadcom won’t catch up on semiconductor orders until at least November," 5 Mar. 2021 In college, Zion Williamson was a constant threat to come out of nowhere and swat a shot into the fifth row. Christian Clark, NOLA.com, "Zion Williamson: Last year, 'my body wasn't able to do certain things'," 11 Dec. 2020 Ideal for felines that love to swat and pounce, this toy features three levels of tracks and three moving balls, which roll around and help draw a pet's attention. Shayna Murphy, USA TODAY, "The 5 best Amazon deals you can get this Wednesday," 9 Dec. 2020 But Barrett wouldn't engage on topics that seemed easy to swat away, including that only Congress can change the date that the election takes place. Arkansas Online, "GOP pushes Barrett's nomination ahead, Dems decry 'sham'," 15 Oct. 2020 But Barrett wouldn't engage on topics that seemed easy to swat away, including that only Congress can change the date that the election takes place. Arkansas Online, "GOP pushes Barrett's nomination ahead, Dems decry 'sham'," 15 Oct. 2020 But Barrett wouldn't engage on topics that seemed easy to swat away, including that only Congress can change the date that the election takes place. Arkansas Online, "GOP pushes Barrett's nomination ahead, Dems decry 'sham'," 15 Oct. 2020 After sharing another laugh with the vice presidential nominee, Maddow followed up by questioning if the senator had any instinct to swat it away. Emily Tannenbaum, Glamour, "Kamala Harris Was Asked About the Mike Pence Fly, and Her Response Was Iconic," 15 Oct. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Bond's athleticism also translates to the defensive end, with the ability to switch positions and swat shots at the rim. Ben Steele, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Marquette's Shaka Smart already making local hoops talent a priority," 12 Apr. 2021 Across the unit, key plays were being made, including a swat of a fourth-down pass by defensive tackle Demarcus Elliott. Jon Blau, The Indianapolis Star, "IU football: QB Michael Penix, aggressive defense shine," 2 Nov. 2020 Hunt's swat on Sunday was his fifth as an NFL player. Amie Just | Staff Writer, NOLA.com, "With his FG block, Saints DE Margus Hunt made the most of his call up. He has the bruise to prove it.," 14 Sep. 2020 His volleyball-like swat of Jokic in the first half was memorable. Gordon Monson, The Salt Lake Tribune, "Gordon Monson: Can the Utah Jazz reverse the inevitable? They can if they play like this.," 20 Aug. 2020 Zion's first and only appearance against the Bucks included a sensational swat by Giannis Antetokounmpo, who apparently isn't ready to cede any ground in the hierarchy of NBA stars. Jr Radcliffe, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Eleven memorable plays during the 2019-20 Bucks season," 14 Aug. 2020 As the Spurs’ season continues to slide toward the abyss — the loss to Dallas bumped them to 12th place in the Western Conference standings — moments like Walker’s Wednesday’s swat-a-thon provide a glimmer of hope. Jeff Mcdonald, ExpressNews.com, "Spurs’ Lonnie Walker IV hopes best is yet to come," 27 Feb. 2020 Gray's swat generated a fast-break layup for Wyoming senior Evan Prater, who turned in one of his best performances in his final regular-season game. Shelby Dermer, Cincinnati.com, "After 21-0 regular season, can Wyoming boys basketball win a DII state championship?," 15 Feb. 2020 Turkey had gone 0 for 9 on shots before Ilyasova’s swat bounced off the rim and dropped through the net. Tim Reynolds, BostonGlobe.com, "US narrowly avoids shocking upset in basketball World Cup," 3 Sep. 2019

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.

See More

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

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about swat

Statistics for swat

Last Updated

12 Mar 2021

Cite this Entry

“Swat.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/swat. Accessed 21 Apr. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for swat



English Language Learners Definition of SWAT

chiefly US : a police or military unit that is specially trained to handle very dangerous situations


\ 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

More from Merriam-Webster on swat

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for swat

Nglish: Translation of swat for Spanish Speakers

Comments on swat

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


Test Your Vocabulary

Name that Thing: Flower Edition

How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!


Anagram puzzles meet word search.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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