nick

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See also: Nick

English[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

The noun is derived from Late Middle English nik (notch, tally; nock of an arrow).[1] Its further etymology is unknown; a connection with nock (notch in a bow to hold the bowstring; notch at the rear of an arrow that fits the bowstring; cleft in the buttocks) has not been clearly established.[2]

The verb appears to be derived from the noun, though the available evidence shows that some of the verb senses predate the noun senses. No connection with words in Germanic languages such as Danish nikke (to nod), Middle Dutch nicken (to bend; to bow) (modern Dutch nikken (to nod)), Middle Low German nicken (to bend over; to sink), Middle High German nicken (to bend; to depress) (modern German nicken (to nod)), Middle Low German knicken (to bend; to snap) (modern German knicken (to bend; to break), Old Frisian hnekka (to nod), and Swedish nicka (to nod), has been clearly established.[3]

Noun[edit]

nick (plural nicks)

  1. A small cut in a surface.
    1. (now rare) A particular place or point considered as marked by a nick; the exact point or critical moment.
    2. (printing, dated) A notch cut crosswise in the shank of a type, to assist a compositor in placing it properly in the stick, and in distribution.
      • 1841, William Savage, “NICK”, in A Dictionary of the Art of Printing, London: Longman, Brown, Green, and Longmans, OCLC 906093397, page 543:
        A nick is a hollow cast crossways in the shanks of types, to make a distinction readily between differnt sorts and sizes; and to enable the compositor to perceive quickly the bottom of the letter as it lies in the case, when composing; as nicks are always cast on that side of the shank on which the bottom of the face of the letter is placed. A great deal of inconvenience frequently arises, owing to the founders casting different founts of types with a similar nick in each.
  2. Senses connoting something small.
    1. (cricket) A small deflection of the ball off the edge of the bat, often going to the wicket-keeper for a catch.
    2. (genetics) One of the single-stranded DNA segments produced during nick translation.
    3. (real tennis) The point where the wall of the court meets the floor.
  3. (Britain, slang) In the expressions in bad nick and in good nick: condition, state.
    The car I bought was cheap and in good nick.
    • 2014 July 20, Jane Gardam, “Give us a bishop in high heels [print version: ‘Give us a high-heeled bishop’, International New York Times, 22 July 2014, page 11]”, in The New York Times[1], archived from the original on 7 November 2015:
      [F]urther south in Kent, there was St. Mildred, whose mother [Domne Eafe], in 670, founded the minster that still stands there in good nick, with nine nuns who are an ever-present help in trouble to all religions and none.
  4. (Britain, law enforcement, slang) A police station or prison.
    He was arrested and taken down to Sun Hill nick [police station] to be charged.
    He’s just been released from Shadwell nick [prison] after doing ten years for attempted murder.
Derived terms[edit]
Translations[edit]

Verb[edit]

nick (third-person singular simple present nicks, present participle nicking, simple past and past participle nicked)

  1. (transitive) To make a nick or notch in; to cut or scratch in a minor way.
    I nicked myself while I was shaving.
    1. (transitive) To make ragged or uneven, as by cutting nicks or notches in; to deface, to mar.
      • c. 1606–1607, William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of Anthonie and Cleopatra”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358, [Act III, scene xiii], page 356, column 2:
        The itch of his Affection ſhould not then / Haue nickt his Captain-ſhip, at ſuch a point, / When halfe to halfe the world oppos'd, he being / The meered queſtion?
        The itch of his affection should not then / Have marred his captainship, at such a point, / When half of the world was opposing the other half, he being / the crucial player?
      • c. 1715–1717, Matthew Prior, “Alma: Or, The Progress of the Mind. In Three Cantos”, in The Poetical Works of Matthew Prior, Esq. [], Edinburgh: Printed by Mundell and Son, [], published 1793, OCLC 931361946; republished in Robert Anderson, editor, The Works of the British Poets. [], volume VII, London: Printed for John & Arthur Arch; and for Bell & Bradfute, and J. Mundell & Co. Edinburgh, 1795, OCLC 221535929, canto III, page 466, column 2:
        But, give him port and potent ſack, / From milkſop he ſtarts up Mohack; / Holds that the happy know no hours; / So through the ſtreets at midnight ſcowers, / Breaks watchmen's heads and chairmen's glaſſes, / And thence proceeds to nicking ſaſhes; []
    2. (transitive, rare) To make a crosscut or cuts on the underside of (the tail of a horse, in order to make the animal carry it higher).
  2. (transitive, obsolete) To fit into or suit, as by a correspondence of nicks; to tally with.
    • 1605, M. N. [pseudonym; William Camden], “Allusions”, in Remaines of a Greater Worke, Concerning Britaine, the Inhabitants thereof, Their Languages, Names, Surnames, Empreses, Wise Speeches, Poësies, and Epitaphes, London: Printed by G[eorge] E[ld] for Simon Waterson, OCLC 1064186951, page 140:
      An Alluſion is as it were a dalliance or playing with words, like in ſound, vnlike in ſense, by changing, adding, or ſubtracting a letter or two; ſo that words nicking and reſembling one the other, are appliable to diffrent ſignifications.
    1. (transitive) To hit at, or in, the nick; to touch rightly; to strike at the precise point or time.
      • 1692, Roger L’Estrange, “[The Fables of Æsop, &c.] Fab[le] XXXVIII. A Horse and an Asse. [Reflexion].”, in Fables, of Æsop and Other Eminent Mythologists: [], London: Printed for R[ichard] Sare, [], OCLC 228727523, page 38:
        [I]t requires a Critical Nicety both of Wit, and of Judgment, to find out the Genius, or the Propenſions, of a Child, [] The Juſt Seaſon of Doing Things must be Nick'd, and All Accidents Obſerv'd and Improv'd; for Weak Minds are to be as Narrowly Attended, as Sickly Bodies: []
    2. (transitive, cricket) To hit the ball with the edge of the bat and produce a fine deflection.
    3. (transitive, gaming) To throw or turn up (a number when playing dice); to hit upon.
  3. (transitive, Australia, Britain, slang) To steal.
    Someone’s nicked my bike!
  4. (transitive, Britain, law enforcement slang) To arrest.
    The police nicked him climbing over the fence of the house he’d broken into.
Derived terms[edit]
Translations[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

From nick(name).

Noun[edit]

nick (plural nicks)

  1. (Internet) Clipping of nickname.
    a user’s reserved nick on an IRC network
    • 1995, Donald Rose, Internet Chat Quick Tour: Real-time Conversations & Communications Online, Chapel Hill, N.C.: Ventana Press, →ISBN, page 42:
      /nick <new-nickname> Changes your nickname—the name by which other IRCers see and refer to you—to anything you'd like (but remember that nine characters is the maximum nick length).
    • 2014, Josh Datko, “Chatting Off-the-record”, in BeagleBone for Secret Agents: Bbrowse Anonymously, Communicate Secretly, and Create Custom Security Solutions with Open Source Software, the BeagleBone Black, and Cryptographic Hardware (Community Experience Distilled), Birmingham, West Midlands: Packt Publishing, →ISBN:
      Also, ERC, like Emacs, is extremely modular and flexible. It is, of course, a free software program, but there are also many existing modules from nick highlighting to autoaway that you can use.

Verb[edit]

nick (third-person singular simple present nicks, present participle nicking, simple past and past participle nicked)

  1. (transitive, obsolete) To give or call (someone) by a nickname; to style.

Etymology 3[edit]

A variant of nix or nixie.

Noun[edit]

nick (plural nicks)

  1. (archaic) A nix or nixie (water spirit).
    • 1879, Viktor Rydberg, “The Magic of the People and the Struggle of the Church against It”, in August Hjalmar Edgren, transl., The Magic of the Middle Ages: Translated from the Swedish, New York, N.Y.: Henry Holt and Company, OCLC 3814209, page 201:
      [A]midst Ahriman and his hosts who had now established themselves in the Occident, and as heirs to the horns and tails of Pans and fauns, a crowd of native spirits moved; imps, giants, trolls, forest-spirits, elves and hobgoblins in and on the earth; nicks, river-sprites in the water, fiends in the air, and salamanders in the fire.

References[edit]

  1. ^ nik, n.” in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007, retrieved 30 January 2019.
  2. ^ nick, n.1”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford: Oxford University Press, September 2003; “nick” (US) / “nick” (UK) in Oxford Dictionaries, Oxford University Press.
  3. ^ nick, v.2”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford: Oxford University Press, September 2003.

Further reading[edit]

Anagrams[edit]


German[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Verb[edit]

nick

  1. Imperative singular of nicken.
  2. (colloquial) First-person singular present of nicken.

Kashubian[edit]

Pronoun[edit]

nick

  1. nothing

Swedish[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

EB1911 - Volume 01 - Page 001 - 1.svg This entry lacks etymological information. If you are familiar with the origin of this term, please add it to the page per etymology instructions. You can also discuss it at the Etymology scriptorium.

Noun[edit]

nick c

  1. nod (movement of the head to indicate agreement)
  2. header (in football)
Declension[edit]
Declension of nick 
Singular Plural
Indefinite Definite Indefinite Definite
Nominative nick nicken nickar nickarna
Genitive nicks nickens nickars nickarnas
Synonyms[edit]
Derived terms[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

From the English nickname

Noun[edit]

nick n

  1. (slang) nick, nickname
Declension[edit]
Declension of nick 
Singular Plural
Indefinite Definite Indefinite Definite
Nominative nick nicket nick nicken
Genitive nicks nickets nicks nickens