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nab

[nab] /næb/
verb (used with object), nabbed, nabbing. Informal.
1.
to arrest or capture.
2.
to catch or seize, especially suddenly.
3.
to snatch or steal.
Origin of nab
1675-1685
1675-85; earlier nap; perhaps < Scandinavian; compare Danish nappe, Norwegian, Swedish nappa to snatch
Related forms
nabber, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for nabbed
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Nero must have slipped in, nabbed the fish, and brought it to our house.

  • He's nabbed three of the Birdsall gang and is away now after Burleigh.

    Warrior Gap Charles King
  • Good Lord, man, you'll get nabbed if you speed up like this within limits.

    Red Pepper Burns Grace S. Richmond
  • It is quite on the cards that we should find that the police have nabbed him.

    Linda Tressel

    Anthony Trollope
  • He nabbed the first passer-by and asked him to point out Dr. Fitzhugh.

    Unwise Child Gordon Randall Garrett
British Dictionary definitions for nabbed

nab

/næb/
verb (transitive) (informal) nabs, nabbing, nabbed
1.
to arrest
2.
to catch (someone) in wrongdoing
3.
to seize suddenly; snatch
Word Origin
C17: perhaps of Scandinavian origin; compare Danish nappe, Swedish nappa to snatch. See kidnap
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for nabbed

nab

v.

"to catch (someone)," 1680s, probably a variant of dialectal nap "to seize, catch, lay hold of" (1670s, now surviving only in kidnap), which possibly is from Scandinavian (cf. Norwegian nappe, Swedish nappa "to catch, snatch;" Danish nappe "to pinch, pull"); reinforced by Middle English napand "grasping, greedy." Related: Nabbed; nabbing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for nabbed

nab

noun

(also nabs) A police officer or detective (1950s+ Street gang)

verb

To catch; seize; arrest; collar: The officers nabbed him around the corner (1686+)

[fr dialect nap as in kidnap, perhaps related to Swedish nappa, ''catch,'' or Danish nappe, ''pull''; probably related to nip; the noun sense is recorded in British criminal slang by 1813]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Word Value for nabbed

11
14
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