• Nip


    • enPR: nĭp, IPA: /nɪp/
    • Rhymes: -ɪp

    Origin 1

    From Middle English nippen ("a small sip").

    Full definition of nip



    (plural nips)
    1. A small quantity of something edible or a potable liquor.I’ll just take a nip of that cake.He had a nip of whiskey.


    Origin 2

    Diminutive of nipple.



    (plural nips)
    1. (vulgar) A nipple, usually of a woman.

    Origin 3

    Probably from a form of Middle Dutch nipen. Cognate with Danish nive ("pinch"); Low German knipen; German kneipen and kneifen ("to pinch, cut off, nip"), Old Norse hnippa ("to prod, to poke"); Lithuanian knebti.


    1. To catch and enclose or compress tightly between two surfaces, or points which are brought together or closed; to pinch; to close in upon.
      • 1859, w, Idylls of the King, May this hard earth cleave to the Nadir hell, Down, down, and close again, and nip me flat, If I be such a traitress.
    2. To remove by pinching, biting, or cutting with two meeting edges of anything; to clip.
    3. To blast, as by frost; to check the growth or vigor of; to destroy.
    4. To vex or pain, as by nipping; hence, to taunt.
      • 1590, w, The Faerie Queene, And sharp remorse his heart did prick and nip.



    (plural nips)
    1. A playful bite.The puppy gave his owner’s finger a nip.
    2. A pinch with the nails or teeth.
    3. Briskly cold weather.There is a nip in the air. It is nippy outside.
      • 1915, W. Somerset Maugham, "", :The day had only just broken, and there was a nip in the air; but the sky was cloudless, and the sun was shining yellow.
    4. A seizing or closing in upon; a pinching; as, in the northern seas, the nip of masses of ice.
    5. A small cut, or a cutting off the end.
    6. A blast; a killing of the ends of plants by frost.
    7. A biting sarcasm; a taunt.
    8. (nautical) A short turn in a rope. Nip and tuck, a phrase signifying equality in a contest. U.S.
    9. The place of intersection where one roll touches another in papermaking.
    10. (historical slang) A pickpocket.
      • 1977, Gãmini Salgãdo, The Elizabethan Underworld, A novice nip, newly arrived in London, went one afternoon to the Red Bull in Bishopsgate, an inn converted to a playhouse.

    Origin 4


    1. To make a quick, short journey or errand; usually roundtrip.Why don’t you nip down to the grocer’s for some milk?


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