- the act or practice of biting one's fingernails, especially as the result of anxiety or nervousness.
- Informal. nervousness: The announcement that the trade agreement had been signed ended a week of nail-biting on Wall Street.
- Informal. causing nervousness: The nail-biting part of the canoe trip was through the stretches of white water.
Origin of nail-biting
Related Words for nail-bitingnervousness, anxiety, strain, apprehension, hostility, unease, discomfort, pressure, jitters, suspense, worry, concern, restlessness, foreboding, uncertainty, disquiet, mistrust, misgiving, angst, doubt
Examples from the Web for nail-biting
Contemporary Examples of nail-biting
During the nail-biting 2008 Democratic presidential primary, Obama was in it to win it.John Boehner’s Holiday Photo Snub & More Petty Political Moments
December 5, 2012
There are moments of exultation and frustration, of nail-biting anxiety, and the normal banter that characterizes any workplace.JFK’s Secret White House Recordings Unveiled
September 25, 2012
A sports movie and a redemption story and a drug movie and a nail-biting tale of success!Lights, Camera, Cocktails
September 17, 2011
Four years ago, a billion people watched as the World Cup final was decided by the nail-biting process and Italy edged France.World Cup Primer
June 12, 2010
Kelley Armstrong's New York Times bestselling Darkest Powers trilogy comes to a nail-biting conclusion with The Reckoning.Spring's Big YA Books
March 18, 2010
Historical Examples of nail-biting
- the act or habit of biting one's fingernails
- anxiety or tension
- (as modifier)nail-biting suspense