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noun British Dialect.
  1. a crest or summit of a small hill.
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Origin of knap1

before 1000; Middle English; Old English cnæpp top, summit; cognate with Old Norse knappr knob


verb (used with or without object), knapped, knap·ping. Chiefly British Dialect.
  1. to strike smartly; rap.
  2. to break off abruptly.
  3. to chip or become chipped, as a flint or stone.
  4. to bite suddenly or quickly.
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Origin of knap2

1425–75; late Middle English; cognate with Dutch knap (noun), knappen (v.) crack; orig. imitative
Related formsknap·per, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for knap

Historical Examples

  • Knap, to break in two; also, to speak after the manner of the English.

    St. Ronan's Well

    Sir Walter Scott

  • Also, a blow or correction, as "you'll knap it," for some misdeed.

    The Sailor's Word-Book

    William Henry Smyth

  • But from a knap on the knee-pan I have known a man a lamiter for life.

  • "Really, I think he might have kept his remarks to himself," said Dr. Knap.

    Dry Fish and Wet

    Anthon Bernhard Elias Nilsen

  • It was Mrs. Knap who had the happy thought—the Peace Movement.

    Dry Fish and Wet

    Anthon Bernhard Elias Nilsen

British Dictionary definitions for knap


  1. dialect the crest of a hill
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Word Origin

Old English cnæpp top; compare Old Norse knappr knob


verb knaps, knapping or knapped
  1. (tr) dialect to hit, hammer, or chip
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Derived Formsknapper, noun

Word Origin

C15 (in the sense: to strike with a sharp sound): of imitative origin; compare Dutch knappen to crack
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 knap


"to strike with a sharp sound," late 15c., echoic. Earlier (c.1400) as a noun meaning "abrupt stroke." Related: Knapped; knapping.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper