[ nest ]
/ nɛst /
a pocketlike, usually more or less circular structure of twigs, grass, mud, etc., formed by a bird, often high in a tree, as a place in which to lay and incubate its eggs and rear its young; any protected place used by a bird for these purposes.
a place used by insects, fishes, turtles, rabbits, etc., for depositing their eggs or young.
a number of birds, insects, animals, etc., inhabiting one such place.
a snug retreat or refuge; resting place; home.
an assemblage of things lying or set close together, as a series of boxes or trays, that fit within each other: a nest of tables.
a place where something bad is fostered or flourishes: a nest of vice; a robber's nest.
the occupants or frequenters of such a place.
verb (used with object)
to settle or place (something) in or as if in a nest: to nest dishes in straw.
to fit or place one within another: to nest boxes for more compact storage.
verb (used without object)
to build or have a nest: The swallows nested under the eaves.
to settle in or as if in a nest.
to fit together or within another or one another: bowls that nest easily for storage.
to search for or collect nests: to go nesting.
Computers. to place a routine inside another routine that is at a higher hierarchical level.
Words nearby nest
Origin of nest
before 900; Middle English, Old English (cognate with Dutch, German nest; akin to Latin nīdus nest, Old Irish net, Welsh nyth, Sanskrit nīḍa lair) ≪ Indo-European *nizdo- bird's nest, equivalent to *ni down (see nether) + *zd-, variant of *sd-, ablaut variant of *sed-, v. base meaning “sit” (see sit1) + *-o- theme vowel
OTHER WORDS FROM nestnest·a·ble, adjectivenest·er, nounnest·like, adjectivenest·y, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020
British Dictionary definitions for nestable
/ (nɛst) /
a place or structure in which birds, fishes, insects, reptiles, mice, etc, lay eggs or give birth to young
a number of animals of the same species and their young occupying a common habitatan ants' nest
a place fostering something undesirablea nest of thievery
the people in such a placea nest of thieves
a cosy or secluded place
a set of things, usually of graduated sizes, designed to fit togethera nest of tables
military a weapon emplacementa machine-gun nest
(intr) to make or inhabit a nest
(intr) to hunt for birds' nests
(tr) to place in a nest
Derived forms of nestnester, nounnestlike, adjective
Word Origin for nest
Old English; related to Latin nīdus (nest) and to beneath, sit
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
Idioms and Phrases with nestable
see empty nest; feather one's nest; foul one's nest; stir up a hornet's nest.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.