[ nob-uhl ]
See synonyms for: nobbling on

verb (used with object),nob·bled, nob·bling.British Slang.
  1. to drug or disable (a race horse) to prevent its winning a race.

  2. to convince (a person) by fraudulent methods; misrepresent or lie to.

  1. to swindle; defraud.

  2. to seize (a person); hold for arrest.

Origin of nobble

First recorded in 1840–50; back formation from nobbler, variant of hobbler (dialectal phrase an 'obbler being taken as a nobbler)

Other words from nobble

  • nobbler, noun

Words Nearby nobble Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use nobble in a sentence

  • I allus said any fool can be a smith but it takes a good man to nobble.

    Life in a Railway Factory | Alfred Williams
  • The son did not write from Melbourne, nor from nobble,—nor from Ahalala till gold had been found.

    John Caldigate | Anthony Trollope
  • His luggage was all right in the warehouse, and he arranged that it should be sent down to nobble.

    John Caldigate | Anthony Trollope
  • You once nobble that, congregation, and a buck joyride to heaven becomes a back number.

    Ulysses | James Joyce
  • Dick told him that they had heard of that very successful mining enterprise since their arrival at nobble.

    John Caldigate | Anthony Trollope

British Dictionary definitions for nobble


/ (ˈnɒbəl) /

verb(tr) British slang
  1. to disable (a racehorse), esp with drugs

  2. to win over or outwit (a person) by underhand means

  1. to suborn (a person, esp a juror) by threats, bribery, etc

  2. to steal; filch

  3. to get hold of; grab

  4. to kidnap

Origin of nobble

C19: back formation from nobbler, from false division of an hobbler (one who hobbles horses) as a nobbler

Derived forms of nobble

  • nobbler, noun

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