Nearby words

  1. nocturnal myoclonus,
  2. nocturnally,
  3. nocturne,
  4. nocuous,
  5. nocuously,
  6. nod off,
  7. nod out,
  8. nod, land of,
  9. nodal,
  10. nodal bradycardia


    give the nod to, Informal. to express approval of; agree to: The board gave the nod to the new proposal.
    on the nod,
    1. British Slang.on credit.
    2. Slang.drowsy following a dose of a narcotic drug.

Origin of nod

1350–1400; Middle English nodde, of uncertain origin

Related formsnod·der, nounnod·ding·ly, adverbun·nod·ding, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for nodding

British Dictionary definitions for nodding


verb nods, nodding or nodded

to lower and raise (the head) briefly, as to indicate agreement, invitation, etc
(tr) to express or indicate by noddingshe nodded approval
(tr) to bring or direct by noddingshe nodded me towards the manager's office
(intr) (of flowers, trees, etc) to sway or bend forwards and back
(intr) to let the head fall forward through drowsiness; be almost asleepthe old lady sat nodding by the fire
(intr) to be momentarily inattentive or carelesseven Homer sometimes nods
nodding acquaintance a slight, casual, or superficial knowledge (of a subject or a person)


a quick down-and-up movement of the head, as in assent, command, etcshe greeted him with a nod
a short sleep; napSee also land of Nod
a swaying motion, as of flowers, etc, in the wind
on the nod informal
  1. agreed, as in a committee meeting, without any formal procedure
  2. (formerly) on credit
the nod boxing informal the award of a contest to a competitor on the basis of points scored
See also nod off, nod out

Derived Formsnodding, adjective, noun

Word Origin for nod

C14 nodde, of obscure origin

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 nodding
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with nodding


In addition to the idiom beginning with nod

  • nodding acquaintance
  • nod off

also see:

  • get the nod
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.