WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2014
nail /neɪl/USA pronunciation
- a thin, rod-shaped piece of metal, usually having a pointed tip and a flattened head, made to be hammered into wood or other material as a fastener or support.
- a thin, hard, horny area on the upper side of the end of a finger or toe.
- to fasten with a nail or nails: [~ + object]to nail a picture to the wall.[~ + up + object]to nail up the demands on the wall.[~ + object + up]to nail the demands up.
- to enclose or shut by nailing: [~ + object]He nailed the door closed.[~ + object + up]He nailed the door up.[~ + up + object]They nailed up the door.
- [~ + object][Informal.]
- to catch; seize:The police nailed him as he was trying to escape.
- to hit successfully:The batter nailed the ball for a home run.
- nail down, to make final; settle once and for all: [~ + down + object]to nail down an agreement.[~ + object + down]Nail it down before you sign anything.
- hit the nail on the head, to say or do exactly the right thing;
to be exactly right.
Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
nail /neɪl/ n
- a fastening device usually made from round or oval wire, having a point at one end and a head at the other
- anything resembling such a fastening device, esp in function or shape
- the horny plate covering part of the dorsal surface of the fingers or toes
Related adjective(s): ungual, ungular
- the claw of a mammal, bird, or reptile
- a unit of length, formerly used for measuring cloth, equal to two and a quarter inches
- hit the nail on the head ⇒ to do or say something correct or telling
- on the nail ⇒ (of payments) at once (esp in the phrase pay on the nail)
Etymology: Old English nǣgl; related to Old High German nagal nail, Latin unguis fingernail, claw, Greek onuxˈnailer n
- to attach with or as if with nails
- informal to arrest or seize
- informal to hit or bring down, as with a shot
- informal to expose or detect (a lie or liar)
- to fix or focus (one's eyes, attention, etc) on an object
- to stud with nails
'nail' also found in these entries:
In the English description: