[ hob-nob ]
/ ˈhɒbˌnɒb /

verb (used without object), hob·nobbed, hob·nob·bing.

to associate on very friendly terms (usually followed by with): She often hobnobs with royalty.
Archaic. to drink together.


a friendly, informal chat.

Origin of hobnob

1595–1605; from the phrase hab or nab literally, have or have not, Old English habban to have + nabban not to have (ne not + habban to have)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for hobnob

British Dictionary definitions for hobnob


/ (ˈhɒbˌnɒb) /

verb -nobs, -nobbing or -nobbed (intr often foll by with)

to socialize or talk informally
obsolete to drink (with)

Word Origin for hobnob

C18: from hob or nob to drink to one another in turns, hence, to be familiar, ultimately from Old English habban to have + nabban not to have
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

Word Origin and History for hobnob



1763, "to drink to each other," from hob and nob (1756) "to toast each other by turns, to buy alternate rounds of drinks," from c.1550 hab nab "to have or have not, hit or miss," probably ultimately from Old English habban, nabban "have, not have," with the negative particle ne- attached, as was customary. Modern sense of "socialize" is 1866. Related: Hobnobbed; hobnobbing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper