- (in a web browser window or in a spreadsheet or other application) a page displayed by clicking on or selecting a user interface element that resembles a paper tab:The third tab in the spreadsheet list expenses.
- the display of this user interface element:I have too many tabs open in my browser right now.
- a small, often narrow, drop curtain, for masking part of the stage.
- tableau curtain.
verb (used with object), tabbed, tab·bing.
verb (used without object), tabbed, tab·bing.
Origin of tab1
Origin of tab2
Related Words for tabsflap, clip, stop, flag, tag, slip, strip, logo, holder, loop, bookmark, sticker, marker, account, cost, invoice, price, rate, charge, score
Examples from the Web for tabs
Contemporary Examples of tabs
He was taking twenty 80mg tabs of Oxy a day!Did he have any sober periods?'Celebrity Rehab' Counselor: Mindy McCready Won't Be the Last
February 26, 2013
She too has taken quite a blistering in the media—this after spending months on the run from the tabs.What You Can Learn From John Edwards and Rielle Hunter
June 27, 2012
Obama took particular pleasure in sending his tabs to [government minister] Tom Mboya himself or to [politician] Mwai Kibaki.The Tragic Life of Barack Obama’s Father
Sally H. Jacobs
July 10, 2011
The committee has not forced the issue, a decision one member has ascribed to fear of the Murdoch tabs.Murdoch Lieutenant Under Fire
March 11, 2011
And From the Department of British Tabloids The World Cup is pretty much over, as far as the tabs are concerned.World Cup Primer
June 12, 2010
Historical Examples of tabs
Jim tipped liberally, because his firm was what is known as "easy on the tabs."Mixed Faces
There was a friend of yores in a while ago who seemed to be sort of keepin' tabs on him.Rimrock Trail
J. Allan Dunn
They unhooked four of the six tabs from the wall and donned them.The Judas Valley
Even though I disappoint you ever so badly, you must know so, dear Tabs.
It was the best part of five years since Tabs had driven a car.
verb tabs, tabbing or tabbed
Word Origin for tab
"small flap," c.1600, possibly a dialectal word, of uncertain origin. Often interchangeable with tag (n.1). Cf. also Middle English tab "strap or string" (mid-15c.), Norwegian dialectal tave "piece of cloth, rag."
"account, bill, check," 1888, American English colloquial, probably a shortened form of tabulation or of tablet in the sense of "a sheet for writing on." Figurative phrase keep a tab on is recorded from 1890.
"to designate, label," 1924, perhaps an alteration of tag (v.2). Related: Tabbed; tabbing.
see keep tabs on.