- a contrivance used for catching game or other animals, as a mechanical device that springs shut suddenly.
- any device, stratagem, trick, or the like for catching a person unawares.
- any of various devices for removing undesirable substances from a moving fluid, vapor, etc., as water from steam or cinders from coal gas.
- Also called air trap. an arrangement in a pipe, as a double curve or a U-shaped section, in which liquid remains and forms a seal for preventing the passage or escape of air or of gases through the pipe from behind or below.
- traps, the percussion instruments of a jazz or dance band.
- Trapshooting, Skeet. a device for hurling clay pigeons into the air.
- the piece of wood, shaped somewhat like a shoe hollowed at the heel, and moving on a pivot, used in playing the game of trapball.
- the game of trapball.
- Sports. an act or instance of trapping a ball.
- Also called mousetrap, trap play. Football. a play in which a defensive player, usually a guard or tackle, is allowed by the team on offense to cross the line of scrimmage into the backfield and is then blocked out from the side, thereby letting the ball-carrier run through the opening in the line.
- Slang. mouth: Keep your trap shut.
- Chiefly British. a carriage, especially a light, two-wheeled one.
- to catch in a trap; ensnare: to trap foxes.
- to catch by stratagem, artifice, or trickery.
- to furnish or set with traps.
- to provide (a drain or the like) with a trap.
- to stop and hold by a trap, as air in a pipe.
- Sports. to catch (a ball) as it rises after having just hit the ground.
- Football. to execute a trap against (a defensive player).
- to set traps for game: He was busy trapping.
- to engage in the business of trapping animals for their furs.
- Trapshooting, Skeet. to work the trap.
Origin of trap1
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
- traps, Informal. personal belongings; baggage.
- to furnish with or as with trappings; caparison.
Origin of trap2
Examples from the Web for trapping
When the tried to exit the car, her driver locked the doors, trapping her inside.The Ten Worst Uber Horror Stories
November 19, 2014
ISIS has now surrounded Mount Sinjar again, trapping approximately 10,000 Yazidis there.Yazidis Face Genocide by ISIS After U.S. Turns Away
November 4, 2014
On Friday evening, masked men attacked Jews after trapping them on a local highway outside the Arab village.Israelis and Arabs Shaken by the Aftershock of Teen Murders
July 7, 2014
The choice of the van, traditionally considered a vehicle for trapping women, amusingly turns the convention on its head.Scarlett Johansson is an Alien Seductress in ‘Under the Skin’
April 3, 2014
Once it is released to the atmosphere, methane is 23 times more powerful at trapping heat than CO2 is; hence the alarm.The End of the Arctic? Ocean Could be Ice Free by 2015
December 13, 2013
He, accordingly, constructed a very ingenious apparatus to enable him to accomplish this trapping of this "germ dust" in the air.
Why should he not take this man into his confidence, and so work out the trapping of the gang?The Night Riders
It was here, then, that he purposed establishing his first trapping trail.The Gaunt Gray Wolf
This was Charley's first trapping expedition in a real wilderness!Left on the Labrador
In fact, my dear, this will be the only means of trapping the person.Grace Harlowe's Plebe Year at High School
Jessie Graham Flower
- a mechanical device or enclosed place or pit in which something, esp an animal, is caught or penned
- any device or plan for tricking a person or thing into being caught unawares
- anything resembling a trap or prison
- a fitting for a pipe in the form of a U-shaped or S-shaped bend that contains standing water to prevent the passage of gases
- any similar device
- a device that hurls clay pigeons into the air to be fired at by trapshooters
- any one of a line of boxlike stalls in which greyhounds are enclosed before the start of a race
- See trap door
- a light two-wheeled carriage
- a slang word for mouth
- golf an obstacle or hazard, esp a bunker
- (plural) jazz slang percussion instruments
- (usually plural) Australian obsolete, slang a policeman
- (tr) to catch, take, or pen in or as if in a trap; entrap
- (tr) to ensnare by trickery; trick
- (tr) to provide (a pipe) with a trap
- to set traps in (a place), esp for animals
- an obsolete word for trappings (def. 2)
- (tr often foll by out) to dress or adorn
- any fine-grained often columnar dark igneous rock, esp basalt
- any rock in which oil or gas has accumulated
Word Origin and History for trapping
"contrivance for catching unawares," late Old English træppe "snare, trap," from Proto-Germanic *trap- (cf. Middle Dutch trappe "trap, snare"), related to Germanic words for "stair, step, tread" (cf. Middle Dutch, Middle Low German trappe, treppe, German Treppe "step, stair"). Probably akin to Old French trape, Spanish trampa "trap, pit, snare," but the exact relationship is uncertain. The connecting notion seems to be "that on which an animal steps." Sense of "deceitful practice, trickery" is first recorded c.1400. Sense in speed trap recorded from 1906. Slang meaning "mouth" is from 1776. Trap door "door in a floor or ceiling" (often hidden and leading to a passageway or secret place) is first attested late 14c.
c.1400, "ensnare (an animal), catch in a trap; encircle; capture," from trap (n.) or from Old English betræppan. Figurative use is slightly earlier (late 14c.). Related: Trapped; trapping.