stab

[ stab ]
/ stæb /

verb (used with object), stabbed, stab·bing.

verb (used without object), stabbed, stab·bing.

to thrust with or as if with a knife or other pointed weapon: to stab at an attacker.
to deliver a wound, as with a pointed weapon.

noun

Idioms

    a stab in the back, an act of treachery.
    stab (someone) in the back, to do harm to (someone), especially to a friend or to a person who is unsuspecting or in a defenseless position.

Origin of stab

1325–75; (v.) Middle English (Scots) stabben < ?; (noun) late Middle English, akin to or derivative of the v.; compare Scots stob stub1

Related forms

re·stab, verb, re·stabbed, re·stab·bing.un·stabbed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for stab in the back

stab

/ (stæb) /

verb stabs, stabbing or stabbed

noun

Derived Forms

stabber, noun

Word Origin for stab

C14: from stabbe stab wound; probably related to Middle English stob stick
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 stab in the back

stab


In addition to the idiom beginning with stab

  • stab in the back, a

also see:

  • make a stab at
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.